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Reports: Revolution boycott training after Bruce Arena resignation

Jul 26, 2023; Foxborough, MA, USA; New England Revolution head coach Bruce Arena claps on the sideline during the second half against Club Atletico de San Luis at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Eric Canha-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Eric Canha-USA TODAY Sports

New England Revolution players refused to practice Tuesday in the wake of Bruce Arena’s resignation and the murky circumstances surrounding the sudden leadership change, The Athletic and ESPN reported.

Major League Soccer commissioned a law firm to investigate allegations that Arena used “inappropriate and insensitive” remarks with the team, the specifics of which have not surfaced.

During the nearly six-week investigation, Arena was put on administrative leave and assistant coach Richie Williams stepped up in the interim. The Athletic reported that Williams filed complaints about Arena amid the investigation.

Arena resigned on Saturday, and Williams is continuing as the interim head coach.

The Athletic and ESPN reported that a meeting Tuesday morning with players, Williams and team president Brian Bilello left players unsatisfied with the amount of information they were given. Bilello and Williams reportedly did not explain to what extent Williams had been involved with the investigation against Arena.

A second meeting between just the players and staff also led Williams to tell players he was unable to answer their questions.

Williams later met with local reporters and said they team “didn’t’ have training today as we had a bunch of meetings between players, coaches and management.” He added that they decided “collectively” that they also would not train Wednesday.

The reports also said that assistant coaches Shalrie Joseph and Dave van den Bergh support Arena and have walked out of training sessions while Williams has been in charge.

The Revolution sit in second place in the Eastern Conference (13-5-9, 48 points) and are scheduled to play the Colorado Rapids, the worst team in the league, on Saturday.

–Field Level Media