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Waibel: Cassar firing was “cumulative” decision, not just results-based

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Jeff Cassar’s firing wasn’t the result of one game, Craig Waibel said.

MLS: San Jose Earthquakes at Real Salt Lake Jeff Swinger-USA TODAY Sports

Real Salt Lake’s decision to fire Jeff Cassar wasn’t one made because of a “smoking gun” but as the result of analysis since the start of preseason.

Craig Waibel, Real Salt Lake general manager, repeatedly called the decision a “cumulative” one in a teleconference this afternoon.

“(It was) a cumulative decision made by the club in its entirety,” Waibel said, emphasizing that neither he nor Dell Loy Hansen was alone in making the decision. “There’s no one voice in our club that dictates or makes decisions alone. It’s a cumulative decision based on quite a bit of consideration and due time.”

That consideration and due time started in January, not in March, Waibel said.

“We’ve been in since January 20, and we’ve been evaluating since day one,” he said. “The three games that have been played are the not the only things coming into play here.”

The timing — after only three games in the season — was down to the club’s sense of urgency, he said.

“The sense of urgency in our group is palpable, tangible,” Waibel said. “We felt today was the right day to do this and take the next step as an organization. ... There were considerable steps taken forward, but we feel the urgency and the progress being made at this moment, specifically since we checked into preseason, is a little bit behind where we want to be, so we made this decision.”

That decision wasn’t guided by players, who generally had a good relationship with Cassar, Waibel said.

“These decisions are front office decisions, not player-based decisions,” he said. “We certainly believe that’s an unfair position to put our players in. Our players find out clearly before the media or any of the fans did. We informed our team and personnel, but they were not included in the decision.”

Finally, Waibel neither confirmed nor denied that the club would be looking an internal candidates — like Mike Petke or Daryl Shore

“In terms of coaching search, it will be expansive,” he said. “It will a lot of different names, a lot of different names from multiple countries. We will narrow it down as we go through the search and narrow down what fits the needs of our organization the best.”

But don’t expect any confirmation of any rumors you may hear — Waibel was very clear that he has no time for those.

“I am very private in the way that I do my business; I’m very private in the way that our organization does things,” he said. “I don’t have social media on purpose. Any rumors that are out there certainly won’t come from within the walls of our organization. The next announcement that you’ll hear that has validity to it will come at a press conference when we’re announcing the next head coach.”