July 29, 2011

US Hires Juergen Klinsmann to Coach Men's Soccer Team: German soccer legend Juergen Klinsmann has been hired to coach the U.S. men's soccer team, replacing Bob Bradley. Klinsmann, the third-highest scorer in Germany national team history, married an American and has lived in the U.S. for years. He coached Germany's 2006 World Cup team, which reached the semi-finals. His last head coaching gig was at Bayern Munich in 2009, where they reached the Champions League quarterfinals.

posted by rcade to soccer at 12:39 PM - 10 comments

I think it was time for Bradley to go. Not that he did a poor job, but I think 8 years in charge is just too much, and to use Grant Wahl's term, the team had become stale.

Now the big question is whether Klinsmann will be given the authority he asked for the last couple of times he was approached, which US Soccer ultimately balked at.

posted by flannelenigma at 01:22 PM on July 29, 2011

5 years; he was appointed after WC 2006. I agree with you on the staleness, though, and while I think Bradley made decent tactical changes during matches to systems that weren't working, he too frequently got his teams into those bad spots in the first place. Plus he was just a little too conservative in his thinking for me.

I would have liked him to go after WC 2010, actually. One win from 4 games is poor, silly refereeing decisions aside, and we had an unexpectedly clear path to the semifinals after winning the group that the team really squandered, thanks in part to Bradley's poor initial setups.

posted by Errant at 02:50 PM on July 29, 2011

I hope Klinsmann has some gas in the tank. I wonder what this move does to Michael Bradley's prospects.

posted by rcade at 05:21 PM on July 29, 2011

As I said in the huddle thread and previously, it might have been better to have a four-year plan in place after 2010, but the past year has exposed the problems with the squad and setup. So it's time to refocus on 2014, with the age restrictions in the Olympics next year providing a way to look beyond the veterans.

posted by etagloh at 07:35 PM on July 29, 2011

Plus he was just a little too conservative in his thinking for me.

Yep, this was ultimately the reason why I think he had to go. Although I haven't been following the US men until somewhat recently, the common perception that the men played to not be embarassed or make a respectable showing rather than determined to win seems fair to me after watching the team for months now. Ultimately, a team's mentality falls on the coach.

posted by brainofdtrain at 07:55 PM on July 29, 2011

I'm with Errant and said as much after South Africa. I guess there are plenty of coaches who go with their favorites despite what seem to me like better options. Further Bradley has not done nearly enough IMHO to develop the back line, especially the fullback corp.

posted by billsaysthis at 11:33 AM on July 30, 2011

I wonder what this move does to Michael Bradley's prospects.

My impression is he's a solid soccer player and made it on the the pitch through the merits of his play while wearing the red whit & blue.

posted by jmd82 at 11:47 AM on July 30, 2011

Yeah, I think Michael Bradley will be fine. I was one of the people shouting "nepotism" when he first showed up in the squad, but he's proven to be a solid midfield candidate. He could really use a good season at Aston Villa this year to elevate his profile, I think he's generally underrated.

posted by Errant at 01:11 PM on August 01, 2011

Not that I'm disappointed to see Bob Bradley go, but why the change - Was he fired or was his contract up? I'm happy to see Klinsmann get the job, he was my pick when they gave it to Bradley in the first place. I also hope US Soccer gave him the authority to make changes in the developmental program.

posted by FonGu at 01:40 PM on August 01, 2011

Bradley was fired. He got a new four year deal last year after the World Cup.

posted by billsaysthis at 12:40 AM on August 02, 2011

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