While we"re all waiting for MLS action to lớn return, FC Cincinnatihave sầu filled the club"s vacant head coaching job, hiring former Manchester United defender Jaap Stam Thursday.

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Stam, the erstwhile Feyenoord manager, is largely famous in the States from a glorious playing career over in Europe. The details of his still slim managerial portfolio may escape many fans, both in Cincinnati & around the league, which is why we"re here lớn fill in the blanks.

Playing days


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Any good story opens at the beginning, so that"s where our Stam tale starts. The physically imposing center baông xã came up through the youth ranks with his local club in Kampen, which sits about a 70-minute drive sầu east of Amsterdam. He was snapped up by second-flight Zwolle in 1992 và immediately stepped into lớn the starting lineup.

The following summer, Stam moved to lớn Eredivisie side Cambuur, where he continued khổng lồ impress despite the club"s relegation. In 1995, he returned to lớn the top division with Willem II, where he was a teammate of US national team ace Earnie Stewart. It was a short stay, with Dutch powers PSV Eindhoven acquiring the defender at season"s kết thúc, and right on the heels of his Netherlands debut.

Stam"s rep as a highly-skilled bad cop in the heart of defense grew large at PSV. After helping the Farmers clayên ổn the 1997 Eredivisie title, he won both of the country"s major Footballer of the Year awards. He would spend one more season in Eindhoven, & help the Dutch khổng lồ a thrilling fourth place finish at World Cup 1998, before joining Manchester United on a then-world record transfer for a defender.

At Old Trafford, Stam become a key member of the Red Devils, celebrating three Premier League titles, an FA Cup win & the club"s first Champions League triumph in 31 years. From an individual standpoint, he made PFA Team of the Year three straight times và was named UEFA Defender of the Year twice in a row.


During his time in Manchester, he also helped the Netherlands reach the triệu Euro 2000 semifinal, which ended in penalty heartbreak for the hosts. In a move Man United boss AlexFerguson would later publicly regret, Stam was controversially sold lớn Lazio early in the 2001-02 season.

During the first his three seasons in Rome, the burly defender served a four-month ban after testing positive for the steroid nandrolone. After the Dutch were again bounced in the semis of Euro 2004, Stam called time on his international career & made a move sầu khổng lồ AC Milan. He was a starter on the Rossoneriside that suffered the famous collapse against Liverpool in the 2005 Champions League final.

After two years at San Siro, Stam returned home to play a little over a season at Ajax, where he became a KNVB Cup champion for the second time.

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Walking the sideline


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In his first senior head coaching role at Reading. | kích hoạt Images/Reuters


The Oranjelegend did not originally plan on going inlớn management, but was steered in that direction after Zwolle asked him to come help out at training for a few days. "Eventually, you go for your badges và before you know it, six years down the road, you"re coaching a team," Stam would tell reporters while in charge of the club"s Under-21 team in 2012.

Stam also had a pair of stints inFrank de Boer"s Ajax staff, a year as the No. 2 at Zwolle & a season in charge of the Ajax U-21"s under his belt by the time he was handed his first top-flight managing assignment with English Championship side Reading in 2016.

He took over a squad that was expected to struggle in the bottom half of the table, but engineered a shochồng third place finish. The Royals then edged Tlặng Ream"s Fulđam mê in the promotion semifinals before dropping a heartbreaking final to Danny Williams & Huddersfield Town on spot kicks. Stam"s second year at the Reading helm was far more difficult, & he was let go in March with the team hanging just over the drop zone.

Six months later, he took over at Zwolle near midseason of the the 2018-19 campaign. He guided the club on a 7-3-7 run that sealed their Eredivisie survival. Stam did not see out his contract there, though, as he was tabbed khổng lồ succeed former Oranjeteammate Giovanni van Bronckhorst at Feyenoord.

The Rotterdam crew started the 2019-20 chiến dịch with a nine-game unbeaten run across all competitions that included qualification khổng lồ the Europa League group stage. However, their next nine matches saw five sầu losses, & Stam was axed after a 4-0 October humbling at arch rivals Ajax that dropped the club lớn mid-table.

Management style


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Leading a training session at Feyenoord. | kích hoạt Images/Reuters


It will come as no surprise to lớn anyone Stam tends to lớn favor a slightly defensive version of the famed Total Football 4-3-3 system that is synonymous with Dutch soccer. He generally wants his teams to lớn control play through possession — even when Reading were in the throes of aslump that ultimately ended his Madejski Stadium tenure, they were hogging over 58% of the ball.

It"s also quite predictable Stam credits Ferguson & former Netherlands manager Guus Hiddink for molding his coaching style. The latter taught hlặng how to mas sa the individual personalities in a squad, while his old Manchester United trùm inspired his method of crafting rosters and individual lineups.

"Hiddink gives the whole squad a good feeling và what they need khổng lồ bởi vì to lớn perkhung together," Stam once told the Guardian. "As a manager, you need khổng lồ have your own vision và what you want lớn vì chưng with the team. You need to lớn have certain players with certain qualities in your team, lớn create your own style of play & I think Fergie was very good at that."

In a trait likely instilled by his Dutch soccer upbringing, Stam certainly does not shy away from bringing young talent inkhổng lồ the first team rotation. The list of players he has helped groom for success includes, but is not limited khổng lồ LAFC netminder Kenneth Vermeer, Inter Milan ace Christian Eriksen, Werder Bremen midfielder Davy Klaasen, Feyenoord"s Colombia attachồng prodigy Luis Sinisterra & the current Ajax leaders at the back, Daley Blind và AndreOnamãng cầu.