The San Jose Earthquakes have officially named former Chivas Guadalajara manager Matias Almeyda as their new head coach on Monday, a striking appointment for a club laboring in last place in the overall MLS standings.
The charismatic Argentinean has built a track record of success at River Plate, Banfield and Chivas – the latter of which featured runs to the Liga MX 2017 Clausura championship, two Copa MX titles and this year's Concacaf Champions League trophy, which featured victories over MLS sides Seattle Sounders, New York Red Bulls and Toronto FC.
A highly successful central midfielder during his own playing career, Almeyda carved out impressive stints at River Plate, Lazio, Inter Milan and others as well as earning 35 caps and two World Cup campaigns for his country. He left Chivas in June and was recently connected to the managerial vacancies of the Mexican and Argentinean national teams.
"What we saw in Matias was a coach that brought success by creating a culture we strive to emulate,” Earthquakes general manager Jesse Fioranelli said in a statement. “He has demonstrated leadership qualities in Argentina with River Plate and Banfield, as well as in Mexico with Chivas. He has always had a winning mentality, both as a player and a coach, and most importantly, he is someone that knows how to redirect a team in a difficult situation with a commitment to a distinct style of play and youth development.
“Matias came here because he welcomes the challenge of helping our organization open a new chapter after a grueling season. He had several other opportunities available to him from clubs and national teams around the world, but made it very clear the Earthquakes were the one he wanted to lead.”
Nicknamed El Pelado (“The Bald One”) despite his signature flowing locks, he is known for an inspirational style of leadership and a unique tactical identity that emphasizes attacking play and one-on-one duels across the pitch.