The Portland Timbers have tabbed Giovanni Savarese to be their next manager, sources have told ESPN's Taylor Twellman.
Savarese will join the Timbers from NASL side the New York Cosmos, and will succeed Caleb Porter, who resigned last month.
During his time with the Cosmos, Savarese compiled a regular season record of 65-26-51. In that time the Cosmos were crowned league champions on three occasions and were beaten finalists in 2017.
On a conference call with reporters last month, Timbers owner Merritt Paulson said that he preferred a manager who was familiar with MLS and that speaking Spanish was a plus.
Savarese, a forward in his playing days, spent five seasons of his 18-year professional career playing in MLS with the likes of the NY/NJ MetroStars (now the New York Red Bulls), the New England Revolution and the San Jose Earthquakes.
While in MLS, Savarese scored 52 goals in 121 league and playoff appearances. Among the other clubs Savarese played for are Swansea City and Millwall.
In terms of other candidates, sources confirmed that Portland went after New York Red Bulls manager Jesse Marsch, but the Red Bulls denied the Timbers permission.
Savarese joins a team in a state of flux with the club is on the verge of dealing midfielder Darlington Nagbe to Atlanta United for $1.05 million in allocation money, the rights to defender Gbenga Arokoyo and an additional $500,000 to $600,000 in incentive-based compensation.
Those incentives will take some doing on the part of Nagbe to be reached. Sources told ESPN FC that they include $150,000 if Nagbe wins the league's MVP award, $125,000 if he records at least 12 assists, $125,000 if he scores at least 12 goals and $250,000 if he ranks in the top three in the league in terms of goals plus assists while also winning MLS Cup.