NYCFC's Patrick Vieira talks US talent and possible national team future

Patrick Vieira - close-up

Ahead of New York City FC's 2-1 win over Seattle on Saturday afternoon, NYCFC head coach Patrick Vieira sat down for a candid interview on ESPN FC's Boot Room series with analyst and color commentator Taylor Twellman that aired at halftime. City fans will certainly want to sit up and pay attention, but US national team fans should take note: Vieira had plenty to say about US players – and even a potential future with the national team.

"There is talent," Vieira said when asked his thoughts on the US national team and the American player. "And I always think because people in Europe – and I always say it – they don’t understand and they don’t see the talent in this country. And of course it’s difficult to compare the US with Europe because of the football history. 

"But when you look at what this league has achieved in and the number of talent they have in the last 20 years, can you just think about what will happen in the next 20 years?"

However, Vieira's thoughts on the US national team didn't end there. When asked by Twellman if he would ever coach the Yanks, Vieira replied with a playful, "Why not? I don't know what will happen tomorrow."

He then elaborated, though, saying, "It would be silly for me to answer this question because to be a national team coach you would need experience, you would need to know the league, you would need to know the players and I’m too far away from that.

"Of course to coach the national team of the USA would be exciting. I think you will find a lot of coaches around the world who will want that job one day."

In the meantime, Vieira has also been linked with a move to his native France, where reports earlier this month put him in contention to take the vacant managerial position at 10-time Ligue 1 champions Saint-Etienne. However, Vieira downplayed those reports when asked.

"I think to have my name linked with Saint-Etienne or any other team is always flattering, I think it’s always good," Vieira said. "But it stops there. It’s not going any further than that — I am really happy here, I am really into the project because it is really exciting what we’re trying to build at this football club and I want to be part of it."

For more from Twellman and Vieira's wide-ranging interview, including the challenges of coaching and NYCFC star David Villa's legacy, be sure to check out all the Boot Room videos.