The Colorado Rapids have hired Chris Armas as their next head coach, sources briefed on the deal confirmed to The Athletic on Thursday.
The Rapids finished bottom of the Western Conference this year and parted ways with former coach Robin Fraser in September.
A deal was reached between Armas and Colorado after an extensive interview process. The finalists included Rapids interim head coach Chris Little and Charlotte FC assistant Pa-Modou Kah. Little is expected to remain on Armas’ staff, sources add.
Armas previously had two stints as an MLS head coach, most recently with Toronto FC in 2021, but was let go after only 11 league matches. Before that, he won a Supporters’ Shield with the New York Red Bulls in 2018, taking over during the season after Jesse Marsch left for RB Leipzig. Armas went 33-27-11 with the Red Bulls. He then went on to serve as an assistant at Manchester United under Ralf Rangnick during the 2021-22 Premier League season and with Leeds United briefly under Marsch in 2023.
During his decorated playing career, Armas was named MLS best XI five times, won MLS Cup and four U.S. Open Cups with the Chicago Fire. He made 66 appearances with the U.S. men’s national team between 1998 and 2005.
Colorado has already started making player personnel decisions this offseason, with Jack Price and Diego Rubio each announcing they would not be returning to the club in 2024. That opens up plenty of flexibility under the salary cap.
Colorado has DP forward Rafael Navarro on loan from Brazilian club Palmeiras through the summer and will have to decide on a purchase option. Navarro is expected to be a key player in the interim, along with Irish midfielder Connor Ronan, fullbacks Andrew Gutman and Keegan Rosenberry plus rising midfielder Cole Bassett.
(Photo: Jasen Vinlove / USA Today)