Bruce Arena re­turns as US coach, re­plac­ing Jur­gen Klins­mann

Malta Independent - - SPORT -

Bruce Arena is re­turn­ing to coach the US na­tional soccer team, a decade af­ter he was fired.

The win­ningest coach in American na­tional team his­tory, Arena took over yes­ter­day, one day af­ter Jur­gen Klins­mann was fired. The 65-year-old Arena starts work 1 De­cem­ber.

With the US 0-2 in the fi­nal round of World Cup qual­i­fy­ing, the US Soccer Fed­er­a­tion wants to spark a turn­around when the play­offs re­sume March 24 with a home game against Hon­duras.

“His ex­pe­ri­ence at the in­ter­na­tional level, un­der­stand­ing of the re­quire­ments needed to lead a team through World Cup qual­i­fy­ing, and proven abil­ity to build a suc­cess­ful team were all as­pects we felt were vi­tal for the next coach,” USSF Pres­i­dent Su­nil Gu­lati, who fired Arena in 2006, said in a state­ment. “I know Bruce will be fully com­mit­ted to pre­par­ing the play­ers for the next eight qual­i­fy­ing games and earn­ing a berth to an eighth straight FIFA World Cup.”

Arena first took over as na­tional team coach af­ter the 1998 World Cup and led the US to a 71-30-29 record.

“I'm look­ing for­ward to work­ing with a strong group of play­ers that un­der­stand the chal­lenge in front of them af­ter the first two games,” Arena said in a state­ment. “Work­ing as a team, I'm con­fi­dent that we'll take the right steps for­ward to qual­ify”

A wise­crack­ing Brook­lynite known for blunt talk and sar­casm, he coached the Univer­sity of Vir­ginia from 1978-95, then led D.C. United to ti­tles in Ma­jor League Soccer's first two sea­sons be­fore los­ing in the 1998 fi­nal. He guided the Amer­i­cans to the team's best World Cup fin­ish since 1930, a 1-0 loss to Ger­many in the 2002 quar­ter­fi­nals.

He was let go af­ter the team's first-round elim­i­na­tion by Ghana in 2006. Arena coached the New York Red Bulls of MLS from July 2006 to Novem­ber 2007, then was hired the fol­low­ing Au­gust by the Galaxy. He led the team to MLS ti­tles in 2011, 2012 and 2014.

Arena was in­ducted into the US Na­tional Soccer Hall of Fame in 2010.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Malta

© PressReader. All rights reserved.