After a long courtship, it appears US Soccer finally got its man.
Former Germany head coach and World Cup veteran Jürgen Klinsmann, 47, will succeed Bob Bradley as head coach of the US national team, US Soccer announced on Friday.
“We are excited to have Jürgen as the head coach of our men’s national team,” said US Soccer president Sunil Gulati in a statement. “He is a highly accomplished player and coach with the experience and knowledge to advance the program. Jürgen has had success in many different areas of the game and we look forward to the leadership he will provide on and off the field.”
Klinsmann's first game in charge will be a friendly against archrivals Mexico on Aug. 10 in Philadelphia. A formal press conference will be held in New York on Monday to introduce Klinsmann, who is the United States' first foreign-born coach since Bora Milutinović took charge from 1991-95.
“I am proud and honored to be named the head coach of the US men’s national team,” Klinsmann said in a statement. “I would like to thank the US Soccer Federation for the opportunity, and I’m excited about the challenge ahead. I am looking forward to bringing the team together for our upcoming match against Mexico and starting on the road toward qualifying for the 2014 FIFA World Cup.”
Klinsmann comes to the US program with a standout resume. Aside from a 17-year playing career that included stints with VfB Stuttgart, Inter Milan, AS Monaco, Tottenham Hotspur and Bayern Munich, the forward earned 108 caps for Germany, winning the 1990 World Cup and the 1996 European Championship while also tallying 47 goals.
After retiring from professional soccer in 1998, Klinsmann moved to the United States and currently resides in California.
However, in July 2004 he was named head coach of the German national team, charged with leading his country as the host nation of the 2006 World Cup. He didn't disappoint, guiding Germany to a third-place finish and earning praise for introducing an attractive playing style to the squad.
After leaving his position following the World Cup, Klinsmann joined Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich as manager in 2008. During his tenure, Bayern reached the quarterfinal of the UEFA Champions League, losing to eventual champions Barcelona. Overall, his record with Bayern from 2008-09 in all competitions was 25-9-9.
Klinsmann's appointment to the US job comes barely a day after Bradley was relieved of his duties following five years at the helm and despite the former MLS coach signing a new four-year contract last August.
Bradley was hired as United States head coach in January 2007, replacing his onetime mentor, Bruce Arena. He was first named interim head coach in 2006 while the federation reportedly negotiated with several other candidates, including Klinsmann.
During Bradley's five years in charge, he compiled a 43-25-12 record. His sides accomplished many things, including winning the 2007 Gold Cup and reaching the final of both the 2009 Confederations Cup and the 2009 Gold Cup.