Sporting Kansas City and club legend Peter Vermes have agreed to a five-year contract extension through the 2028 MLS season, the club announced Wednesday.
Vermes is the club's manager and sporting director; his previous contract was set to expire after the 2023 season. He is the longest-tenured MLS head coach by far, taking over SKC during the 2009 season. As he's on the precipice of his 15th season, Vermes is among the longest-tenured top-flight men's soccer head coaches in the world.
"Peter is a superlative strategic thinker who loves to win and hates to lose," SKC co-owner and executive director Mike Illig said in a club statement. "He continuously demonstrates his commitment to our ownership’s objective to elevate Sporting KC as a perennial contender in a league that grows tougher and tougher every year."
Vermes led Kansas City as technical director since 2006 – back when they were still the Wizards – and added coaching duties in August 2009. He spent the final three years of his playing career (2000-02) with Kansas City, winning MLS Cup and the Supporters' Shield in 2000. He earned 67 caps with the US men's national team.
During Vermes' time as head coach, SKC have won one MLS Cup (2013) and three US Open Cups (2012, '15, '17). They have made the Audi MLS Cup Playoffs in 10 of the last 12 years. He has also played a key role in the dramatic expansion of Sporting’s infrastructure, which has grown to include new training facilities, MLS NEXT Pro team Sporting KC II and one of the most ambitious youth academies in the league. He was named MLS Sporting Executive of the Year in 2019, the first time that award was given out.
Vermes is the fourth-winningest head coach in MLS history with 183 regular-season victories. He's been the head coach for more than half the games in SKC history, a club that's an MLS original, dating back to the 1996 season.
"Over the last 14 seasons, Peter has earned the recognition and respect of many across soccer regionally, nationally and throughout the MLS community," Illig said. "We trust that his intrepid leadership will help bring more titles to this club and city."
SKC missed the playoffs last year, as two Designated Players (club-record signing Alan Pulido and Gadi Kinda) didn't make a single appearance due to injuries.
The club head into 2023 with momentum, as the final months of last season saw dramatically improved performances and results as summer signings Willy Agada and Erik Thommy helped re-energize the group. With Agada and Thommy here for a full preseason, and Pulido and Kinda working back from injury, as well as retaining key pieces like Dániel Sallói and Johnny Russell, SKC are reloaded.
Sporting KC visit the Portland Timbers on Matchday 1 of the 2023 MLS season this Saturday (10:30 pm ET | MLS Season Pass).