MONTREAL (AP) — Wilfried Nancy was promoted to head coach of Montreal in Major League Soccer, which will play home games at Fort Lauderdale, Florida, because of travel restrictions by the Canadian government during the novel coronavirus pandemic.
Nancy replaced Thierry Henry, who resigned on Feb. 25.
“After Thierry left, we decided to trust him and give him the opportunity to continue the work we started last season, with the same vision,” Montreal sporting director Olivier Renard said Monday.
Nancy, 43, had been an assistant coach since 2016.
“I am very happy and proud to take on this new challenge,” Nancy said in a statement. “It’s even more special, since it’s with the club I’ve known since I came to Montreal.”
A native of France, Nancy joined Montreal as an academy coach when the program debuted in 2011.
Assistant coaches Kwame Ampadu and Laurent Ciman, goalkeeper coach Remy Vercoutre and fitness coach Jules Gueguen will complete Nancy’s staff.
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Montreal will travel to the U.S. on April 6, 11 days before MLS openers. Montreal played home games during the pandemic-delayed 2020 season at Harrison, New Jersey, In addition to playing home games in Fort Lauderdale, Montreal will train there.
“Just like in New Jersey last year with the Red Bulls, we will have access to top infrastructures and favorable weather, which made us choose Florida,” Renard. said “Once again, it will be a very special situation and we want our players to be in the best possible conditions before coming back to play in Montreal. We will do everything in our power to allow the players and the staff to be joined by their families so they can feel good while they are away from home.”
Miami and Montreal will have their own training fields, locker rooms, parking areas and entrance points during a transitional period.