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Ron Newman, the first coach in Sporting KC history, has died

After an extended illness the Wizards' first coach passed away today

Ron Newman Wizards

Sporting Kansas City’s and Major League Soccer’s first manager, Ron Newman passed away today. Newman was a legend that can be credited with helping the game grow and survive in the United States.

To list Newman’s honors would be a long list but here area a few: U.S. National Soccer Hall of Fame, the US Indoor Soccer Hall of Fame, Atlanta Hall of Fame, San Diego Hall of Champions, the USL Hall of Fame and the Dallas Walk of Fame. Teams in the Major Arena Soccer League compete for the Ron Newman Cup.

Newman was inducted to the U.S. Soccer Hall of Fame in 1992 and his short blurb follows:

A coach in the North American Soccer League, the American Soccer League, the Major Indoor Soccer League and Major League Soccer. Newman was coach of the Dallas Tornado, Fort Lauderdale Strikers and San Diego Sockers in the NASL, the Los Angeles Skyhawks of the ASL, the San Diego Sockers of the MISL and the Kansas City Wizards of MLS. He won an NASL title with Dallas in 1971, an ASL title with Los Angeles in 1976 and eight MISL titles with San Diego. Inducted in 1992.

Newman was not only a great coach, he helped start youth leagues and clubs wherever he was and those leagues and clubs grew into some of the best hotbeds of soccer in America now.

When newly formed Major League Soccer needed coaches, Ron Newman was the first one hired, and he led the Kansas City Wiz (then Wizards) long before the rebrand to Sporting Kansas City. Newman’s record with Kansas City 50-50 for in league play and 52-58 in all competitions.

Not a bad record in an upstart league but dwarfed by his overall record of 753–296–27.

Rest in peace coach...