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  • Writer's pictureFred

I Don't Want Zinedine Zidane for the USMNT Coach

Well, your response would be "it doesn't matter what you want, he ain't coming."

Who would be my dream candidate? Caleb Porter. Caleb Porter took a team to the NCAA Soccer Championship (Akron Zips) and is a MLS Cup Winner (Portland Timbers.)

The United States is not a second tier soccer country anymore. They perennially rank in the Top 20 in the FIFA rankings. The era of dual-nationals as players and mercenary coaches is over. (Yeah, I'm lookin' at you Jürgen Klinsmann.)

Greg Berhalter was a good coach for Qatar. The United States advanced to the Round of 16, exactly as far as they should have advanced considering their skill level and their rankings.

No national team coach lasts more than a World Cup cycle.

Zidane is used to coaching the most elite athletes in the world and willing the best to fulfill their destinies. He is not good at coaching a very good team and making them outperform expectations. Under no metric is the United States one of the top 2 or 3 teams in the world. Reports are Zidane only wants to coach France. Yeah, because France, talent-wise, is one of the top 2 or 3 teams in the world. Zidane is biding his time in case France under performs in the EURO 2024 tournament.

America should continue to shore up their youth pipelines, but with the Claudio Reyna mess hanging in the air, the USMNT should move on from Berhalter. With home field advantage in 2026, if America can stay the course with a quality American Coach, they will be in position to go deep into the tournament with a lot of the same players that made up the 2022 squad, one of the youngest in Qatar.

Here's the list of favorites for next coach:

Jesse Marsch - Good Choice

Roberto Martinez - No

Joachim Löw - Hard No

Steve Cherundolo - Maybe, let me think about that.

Jose Mourinho - He would be a good hire if the US Coach died 6 months before the 2026 World Cup. 4 years of Mourinho? Either he would kill a player, or a player would kill him.

Didier Deschamps - No. A poor man's Zidane.

Pellegrino Matarrazo - Hmmm, he would be an interesting choice.

Brian Schmetzer - I like Schmetzer and would love to see him succeed. Unfortunately I think his ceiling would be Steve Sampson. (That's not a compliment.)

Thierry Henry - No. No Frenchies. No French cast offs.

Jim Curtin - A lukewarm maybe.

Gregg Berhalter - I like Berhalter. I think I'm done with Berhalter.

If you rub French Magic Pixie Dust on the Americans, it won't send them to the next World Cup Finals. Your best chance to win is to find an American Coach to pull American talent together. A national team is run different than a club team.

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