Benjamin Mora appointed as York United FC head coach!

York United FC announced on Tuesday, June 4 that Benjamín Mora has been named as the third permanent head coach in club history.

Mora, a native of Mexico City, takes over immediately from interim head coach Mauro Eustáquio, who was in charge for the previous two games after Martin Nash was let go in mid-May. The club confirmed on Tuesday that Eustáquio, as well as assistant coach Camilo Benzi, will be remaining with the coaching staff.

The 44-year-old Mora joins the Nine Stripes with a strong résumé of coaching experience, having most recently managed Liga MX side Atlas. Mora has also worked at a variety of other clubs in Mexico and spent seven years with Malaysian side Johor Darul Ta’zim FC, first with the reserve side before taking the head coaching reins in 2020.

“I feel extremely happy and privileged to take on this role,” Mora said in a statement. “The project is an incredibly interesting and attractive one. I didn’t hesitate because I love my work. I’ve been in different football cultures and my development as a coach has been very rich and rewarding. I’m very passionate for football and I’m in love with the game.”

During his time in Malaysia, Mora won four top-flight league titles and one Malaysia Cup, also guiding them to a successful AFC Champions League campaign in 2022 where JDT topped their group and became the first Malaysian team to advance to the knockout stages of the competition. They were defeated in the round of 16 by the tournament’s eventual champions, Japanese side Urawa Red Diamonds.

Overall, Mora has 190 games of experience as a professional head coach, having won 115 of those.

A self-described “intense” person who enjoys aggressive, possession-minded football with an eagerness to win the ball high up the pitch as well, Mora has explained that he intends to bring a high level of football to York Lions Stadium. He has spent some time becoming familiar with the Canadian Premier League and its common styles of play in hopes of making an impact quickly with York.

In his career, Mora has been known to favour a 4-3-3 or 3-5-2 tactical setup, though he’ll likely take some time assessing his squad at York United in order to establish a full blueprint for the team.

“I’ve taken some time to analyze the Canadian Premier League,” Mora said. “It’s very new, it’s growing very fast, it’s beginning to reach its potential and I want to be somebody who gives something to the league and establishes some fundamentals so it can grow even faster. And I want to develop the young talent in Canada too.

“This is a club with Mexican owners and I know how they think, what they want, and I know how competitive we are. I am the same. I’m a man with a lot of dreams and a lot of expectations. If I don’t expect to win then how can I make everyone believe we can? The conversations I’ve had with the club have been exciting and I can’t wait to get started now.”

Mora’s first game in charge of York United will be this Sunday, June 9 when they host Vancouver FC at York Lions Stadium (6pm ET). The club currently sits fifth in the CPL table, as Mora will look to improve on last year’s fifth-place finish and first-round playoff exit.

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