Whoever was brought in to replace Dom Kinnear on the Houston Dynamo sideline was going to have big shoes to fill, and that honor goes to former Bolton manager Owen Coyle.
Coyle was announced as the club's new manager Tuesday, becoming just the second coach in the franchise's history since it moved from San Jose to Houston and relaunched in 2006.
Kinnear led Houston to two MLS Cups and two other final appearances before departing for the San Jose Earthquakes' job after the 2014 season. Enter the 48-year-old Coyle, who most recently managed Wigan Athletic in England's second tier after three seasons at Bolton, two of which took place in the Premier League.
There, he signed USA midfielder Stuart Holden from the Dynamo, and he also brought Tim Ream from the New York Red Bulls to the club. Prior to Bolton, Coyle managed at Burnley and led the club to promotion to the Premier League, and like Kinnear, he was born in Scotland.
“First and foremost I’m thankful for the opportunity to come to the Houston Dynamo,” Coyle said in a team statement. “It is nice to be wanted by a fantastic club and I feel we have a great opportunity to put a team on the pitch that is pleasing on the eye and can win games. I’ve been watching Houston Dynamo for many years and I know the atmosphere of the supporters. The league is thriving and the opportunity to join a big club like the Dynamo is very exciting for me.”
At a time when every other MLS club aside from Orlando City employs Americans or former MLS players as coaches, the Dynamo have gone against the grain in hiring Coyle, with reports suggesting he is on a three-year deal.