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Sky Blue FC officially signs Gabarra as head coach

As first reported on The Equalizer, Jim Gabarra has signed with Sky Blue FC as head coach and technical director.

Gabarra spent 10 years with the Washington Freedom and coached them through three different leagues (WUSA, W-League and WPS) before parting ways with the team last week.  Gabarra will retain Rick Stainton as an assistant coach.  Stainton served as Sky Blue FC’s interim head coach for the final two months of the 2010 season after Pauliina Miettinen was fired in July.

“I expect to build a team that will make the area very proud, and I’m excited about the challenge,” Gabarra said.  “It’s going to be an interesting year that will involve some change, yet we will make our decisions with positive results as the goal.  Obviously, I went through a lot of change myself in leaving a place I’ve been for the past 10 years, but change is good.  I’m excited about the possibilities here with Sky Blue FC.”

Gabarra will take over all Sky Blue FC player decisions under his new role.

“First thing you have to do is evaluate what you have coming back, and that’s what I’m in the process of doing – evaluating what players are here and working to create a structure that gives players the most professional environment,” Gabarra said.  “We must focus on putting them in a position to develop into better players.  That’s the first step, and you have to devise a plan to figure out where improvements need to be made.  It’s certainly a challenge, but it’s something that I’m looking forward to getting started.”

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