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USA soccer coach Gregg Berhalter fired: USMNT to find new manager after Copa America disaster

Written by on July 11, 2024

USA soccer coach Gregg Berhalter fired: USMNT to find new manager after Copa America disaster

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U.S. men’s national team head coach Gregg Berhalter has been fired just over a week after the team’s shock elimination from the 2024 Copa America in the group stage. The U.S. entered the cup with relatively high expectations, a bare minimum of making it out of the group stage and showing competitiveness against stronger opposition, but a stunning loss to Panama in the second game of the tournament expedited their exit before Uruguay put the final nail in the team’s coffin, and ultimately in Berhalter’s time with the team. Needing to better Panama’s result versus Bolivia in the final match against Uruguay, the Americans failed to do that against one of the tournament’s favorites, forcing the need to hit the reset button just two years away from hosting the 2026 FIFA World Cup.

“I want to thank the U.S. Soccer Federation for entrusting me to lead this team for the past five years. Representing our country is a tremendous honor and I am proud of the identity we have built on and off the field. It was very gratifying watching this team improve over the years and I remain grateful for the lifetime bonds created with out players, coaches, and staff members,” Berhalter said in a statement. “The Copa America result is extremely disappointing and I take full responsibility for our performance. Our approach and process was always focused on the 2026 World Cup and I remain confident that this group will be one of the great stories in 2026.”

The USMNT coach could not produce a single top-tier victory during his five years in charge aside from the domination of struggling rival Mexico. He had five top-20 wins (in terms of FIFA rankings), but four were against Mexico and one was against Iran. 

“I want to thank Gregg for his hard work and dedication to U.S. Soccer and our men’s national team,” said U.S. Soccer President Cindy Parlow Cone in a release. “We are now focused on working with our sporting director Matt Crocker and leveraging his experience at the highest levels of the sport to ensure we find the right person to lead the USMNT into a new era of on-field success.”

As for the next step, it’s anyone’s guess, but fans wonder if this is now the time to go after a big-name boss. There are certainly many possible options out there. The U.S. has been linked in the past with names such as Jose Mourinho, while the likes of World Cup winner Joachim Low and France legend Zinedine Zidane are potentially available. The early fan favorite is certainly former Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp, while MLS coaches such as Columbus Crew’s Wilfried Nancy and LAFC’s Steve Cherundolo are also names to watch.

“We are deeply grateful to Gregg for his commitment the past five years to the men’s national team and to U.S. Soccer,” said Crocker in a release. “Gregg has earned the respect of everyone within our organization and has played a pivotal role in bringing together a young team and moving the program forward. We wish Gregg all the best in his future endeavors, and we know he will find success in his next coaching position.

“Our immediate focus is on finding a coach who can maximize our potential as we continue to prepare for the 2026 World Cup, and we have already begun our search process.”

The post USA soccer coach Gregg Berhalter fired: USMNT to find new manager after Copa America disaster first appeared on OKC Sports Radio.

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