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Austin FC overhauls scouting, player personnel departments after missing MLS playoffs

AUSTIN (KXAN) — A day after they were eliminated from the Major League Soccer playoffs, Austin FC announced changes within its scouting and player personnel departments.

Manuel Junco, who has been the club’s chief scout since 2020, has left and Sean Rubio, the senior vice president of player personnel, has accepted a job with another MLS club. Rubio also filled in as sporting director after Claudio Reyna resigned.

Austin FC also added five new full-time scouts who are “stationed throughout Europe and South America.”

Coming off a disappointing season where Austin FC failed to make the postseason after making the Western Conference finals last season, Sporting Director Rodolfo Borrell reaffirmed his faith in head coach Josh Wolff.

“Identifying global and national talent is an essential ingredient to achieving long-term success within MLS as it is anywhere else and it is important for Austin FC to view player signings through an entirely new lens as we must improve our rate of success on roster construction,” Borrell said. “I believe Josh and his staff deserve increased levels of support from our scouting network, and we intend to deliver that support immediately.”

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Borrell said he’s “confident (Wolff) is the right leader for this team,” and that the club is “fortunate to have a coach with his level of commitment and knowledge.”

With one match remaining, Austin FC is 12th in the Western Conference with 38 points, four shy of the playoff line currently held by rivals FC Dallas. MLS expanded its playoff field this year, adding an additional two teams from each conference to make an 18-team field.

Austin FC owner Anthony Precourt vowed to rectify missing the playoffs, saying Borrell will begin rebuilding immediately.

“With Rodolfo’s recent appointment as Sporting Director, and the vast restructuring of the scouting and recruiting department announced today, there is reason for optimism as we look ahead to next season,” he said. “An intense focus on roster improvements starts now, and will be made as soon as roster flexibility and transfer windows allow.”

The club said Borrell will have a press conference regarding the changes at 10 a.m. Tuesday.

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