July 29 (Bloomberg) -- Jurgen Klinsmann, who led Germany to a third-place finish at the 2006 World Cup, was named coach of the U.S. men’s national soccer team.
Klinsmann, 46, replaces Bob Bradley, who was fired yesterday after five years, U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati announced on the team’s website. He will become the 35th coach in the history of the program.
“We are excited to have Jurgen as the head coach of our men’s national team,” Gulati said. “He is a highly accomplished player and coach with the experience and knowledge to advance the program. Jurgen has had success in many different areas of the game and we look forward to the leadership he will provide on and off the field.”
Terms of the contract weren’t disclosed. Klinsmann is scheduled to have a news conference in New York on Aug. 1, U.S. Soccer said in the statement.
Klinsmann hasn’t coached since being fired by Germany’s Bayern Munich club in April 2009. His first match with the U.S. team will be against Mexico on Aug. 10 in Philadelphia. Mexico beat the U.S. in Bradley’s last major game as coach, according to the team’s schedule.
“I am proud and honored to be named the head coach of the U.S. men’s national team,” Klinsmann said in the statement. “I would like to thank the U.S. Soccer Federation for the opportunity, and I’m excited about the challenge ahead. I am looking forward to bringing the team together for our upcoming match against Mexico and starting on the road toward qualifying for the 2014 FIFA World Cup.”
Klinsmann didn’t immediately return a telephone message left at his California home seeking further comment on his appointment.
Bradley had a 43-25-12 record as U.S. coach, leading the team to the 2007 CONCACAF Gold Cup title and a runner-up spot at the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup. The U.S. reached the Round of 16 at the 2010 World Cup, where it lost to Ghana after extra time, and this summer blew a 2-0 lead in losing 4-2 to Mexico in the Gold Cup final, Bradley’s final two major tournaments.
The Gold Cup loss took place in front of more than 93,000 fans at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California. The U.S. opened a 2-0 lead in the 23rd minute before surrendering four straight goals.
The loss was the second consecutive Gold Cup final in which the U.S. fell to Mexico. In 2009, the loss ended a run of a two consecutive U.S. titles in the regional tournament for North and Central America and the Caribbean.
Klinsmann built his coaching credentials after taking charge of the German national team in July 2004. He introduced new training techniques and overhauled a squad that failed to win a game at that year’s European Championship.
Two years later, he led the team as it hosted the World Cup, finishing third after losing to eventual-champion Italy in the semifinals 2-0 after extra time. He quit three days after the tournament ended and was replaced by Joachim Loew.
Klinsmann was the leading candidate to replace Bruce Arena as U.S. coach in 2006 before withdrawing from consideration, leading to Bradley’s hire. He was then named Bayern manager in 2008 but was fired after less than a year.
Klinsmann scored 47 goals in 108 appearances as a player for Germany and was a member of the 1990 World Cup-winning squad. He also captained Germany to victory at the 1996 European Championship and won the UEFA Cup and Bundesliga in a two-year stint at Bayern.
He also played for Stuttgart, Inter Milan, Tottenham and Sampdoria, scoring 227 goals in 506 club matches. He was twice named Germany’s top player and was named the 1995 player of the year in England.