Don Garber lifted the lid on one of the two worst-kept secrets in Concacaf on Thursday.

By Avi Creditor
November 16, 2018

Don Garber lifted the lid on one of the two worst-kept secrets in Concacaf on Thursday.

Speaking to reporters at the Soccerex convention in Miami, the MLS commissioner prematurely confirmed Tata Martino becoming the Mexico national team's next manager, despite the Mexican federation not yet revealing its new hire. It's been reported for some time that Martino, the 2018 MLS Coach of the Year, would be leaving Atlanta United for Mexico, and the club confirmed prior to the MLS playoffs that he would be departing for an unidentified destination after two years with the nascent franchise.

Garber matter-of-factly did away with the secrecy, though, congratulating Mexico on the hire–and then suggesting that it was his performance in MLS (and not Paraguay, Argentina or Barcelona, among other previous stops) that may have put him on Mexico's radar.

"Good for the FMF (Mexican federation)," Garber said. "They were bold, and they made a very aggressive move to get Tata, who, by the way, before he came to MLS, might not have been on the radar screen for the Mexican national team."

Garber then hinted at the other Concacaf hire-in-waiting, which is believed to involve another MLS coach. Columbus Crew coach and sporting director Gregg Berhalter is widely presumed to become the next permanent coach of the U.S. men's national team, and Garber, who is on the board of directors that must ratify general manager Earnie Stewart's selection, cracked a smile as he discussed the possibilities.

"U.S. Soccer is in the process of finalizing their decision on a U.S. national team coach. I'm sure he'll be great," Garber said. "It's possible he could be coming from Major League Soccer, so I think both federations end up with two great coaches, and that's what it's all about." 

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