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Patrick Vieira departs New York City FC to coach OGC Nice in France

The former star midfielder in Europe returns to his homeland after two-plus seasons guiding NYCFC.

Patrick Vieira coached the Blues to consecutive postseason

Patrick Vieira coached the Blues to consecutive postseason appearances. Photo Credit: Steven Ryan

Despite numerous denials throughout the last two weeks, Patrick Vieira has officially left New York City FC to takeover as the new manager of OGC Nice of France’s Ligue 1, according to Manchester City, the mother club of NYCFC.

Vieira leaves NYCFC after the club pulled a 1-1 draw against MLS-leading Atlanta United on Saturday at Yankee Stadium. According to sources, he held a team meeting Sunday morning to announce his departure from the club.

“I would like to thank City Football Group and New York City FC for the opportunity to have coached this tremendous football club,” Vieira said in the statement through Manchester City. “Leaving New York is an incredibly difficult decision for me and for my family and one that has not been taken lightly.”

Vieira is also taking his coaching staff with him. That includes assistant coach Christian Lattanzio, who took over the helm for Vieira for a match during the 2016 campaign against the Colorado Rapids, performance coach Kristian Wilson and physical performance coach Matt Cook.

Vieira accrued a record of 39-22-22 in his two-plus years with NYCFC, guiding them to a pair of second-place finishes in the Eastern Conference and the first two postseason berths in club history. He leaves the Blues with an 8-3-4 record (28 points) this season as the league enters its two-week World Cup break.

“Patrick leaves us in great shape to continue our encouraging campaign and our goals for the season remain the same,” NYCFC vice president Marty Edelman said in his statement. “We have the most talented and balanced roster of players since the Club was formed. There has been a strategic and long-term approach to building a squad which Patrick has supported.”

Steven Goff of The Washington Post reported late Saturday night that NYCFC will pursue Manchester City assistant Rodolfo Borrell to take over for Vieira.

The 47-year-old Borrell was the youth academy coach at Barcelona and Liverpool before joining City Football Group as their international technical director in 2014. He was named an assistant coach for Manchester City under Pep Guardiola in 2016. Borrell helped develop the likes of Lionel Messi, Cesc Fabregas and Raheem Sterling.

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