Jason Kreis is back in MLS.
Less than a year after parting ways with New York City FC, Kreis was hired as Orlando City SC's second-ever head coach by the club's board of directors, it was announced Tuesday afternoon.
“We are very excited that we have got our man. Jason is a progressive thinking and highly ambitious coach, who is very familiar with success in MLS,” Orlando City SC president and founder Phil Rawlins said. “Jason’s playing philosophy is the same attack-minded, possession-oriented style of soccer that we have built our club around. He is a winner who checks all the boxes for us.”
Orlando cut ties with Adrian Heath earlier this month as the club sputtered below the red line in the Eastern Conference. The only other manager in club history, Heath helped the team move from Austin to Orlando in 2011 and then from USL to MLS ahead of their 2015 expansion season.
Miles Joseph and CJ Brown, who worked with Kreis at Real Salt Lake and NYCFC, will also join as assistants. The trio will begin work on Monday alongside Orlando City’s existing coaching staff, who will all remain in their permanent roles.
“Jason flew to Portugal and we met for several hours. I feel very strongly that he can bring us to the next level of development as a Club, a higher level,” said Orlando City SC chairman and majority owner Flávio Augusto da Silva. “I completely support the Board’s decision to appoint Jason.”
Despite failing to lead NYCFC into the playoffs during their own expansion campaign last year, Kreis has a decorated coaching career in MLS. Before becoming New York's first ever manager, he compiled an 111-87-69 record in all competitions in seven seasons with Real Salt Lake while leading the club to two MLS Cup appearances, including a championship in 2009, and the 2011 CONCACAF Champions League final appearance.
He also has coaching experience on the US national team, joining Jurgen Klinsmann’s staff for a camp earlier this year.
As a player, Kreis made 14 United States national team appearances and scored 108 MLS goals in 305 appearances with the Dallas Burn and Real Salt Lake.
Orlando next match is on Saturday when they go on the road to take on Columbus Crew SC (7:30 pm ET, MLS LIVE). The Lions are currently one point out of playoff position in the East with a 4-5-10 overall record.