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UPDATED: Galaxy fire Curt Onalfo, hire Sigi Schmid

Photo by Jennifer Buchanan/USA Today Sports

The LA Galaxy reportedly made a massive change on Thursday, firing the club’s head coach and replacing him with an MLS coaching legend.

According to the LA Times, the Galaxy have fired head coach Curt Onalfo just 20 games into his first season on the job. In his place, the club has reportedly hired Sigi Schmid, who returns to MLS after being fired by the Sounders last summer.

Schmid is reportedly set to take charge of his first training session on Thursday.

(UPDATE: The Galaxy confirmed the report on Thursday afternoon.

“After a great deal of evaluation and careful consideration, we believe that Sigi Schmid is the best person to coach our team for the remainder of this season and into the future,” said LA Galaxy President Chris Klein. “Sigi is one of the most experienced coaches in the history of soccer in the United States and he is an extremely successful manager that has proven himself to be a winner within Major League Soccer.

Sigi has been one of the best coaches the history of our league and we have full confidence in him to lead our team moving forward. Our goal remains to win trophies and be the best club in North America and we believe that Sigi gives us the best opportunity to achieve this. Curt Onalfo has been a loyal servant to the Galaxy and Galaxy II for a number of seasons and we wish him well.”)

Onalfo was hired in December, replacing longtime head coach Bruce Arena after managing the club’s USL team for three seasons. Through 20 games, the Galaxy sit ninth in the Western Conference as injuries and a lack of chemistry have led to struggles unlike any the club has experienced in recent years.

In his place comes Schmid, who coached the Sounders from 2009-16. He departed the club last summer and was replaced by assistant Brian Schmetzer, who led the team to an MLS Cup trophy just several months later. Schmid has won MLS cups of his own as well as three Supporters’ Shields while becoming the winningest coach in MLS history.

Schmid previously managed the Galaxy from 1999-2004, winning an MLS Cup, a Supporters’ Shield, a CONCACACF Champions Cup and a U.S. Open Cup.

The Galaxy, who reportedly finalized a deal for Jonathan dos Santos this week, return to action on Saturday against, coincidentally, the Sounders.


  1. Although I was very critical of Onalfo at the beginning of the season, I think this is unfair to him. They were unorganized and not very good early on, but I think it was because of the loss of key players and the integration of new players. Then the team was hit by a wave of injuries. Also, management hasn’t gotten any proven strikers so that Onalfo has had to rely on young kids who aren’t ready yet. Their leading scorers, Alessandrini and Dos Santos are really attacking mids. Although the record may not exactly reflect it, for the last month or two they actually have been playing much better and they are just now getting back to full strength with injured and national team players coming back. There are a couple of ironies here. Sigi was fired from the Galaxy before he went to Seattle, even though the Galaxy were in first place at the time. Management complained about the team’s style. Then, I though Sigi was hard done by in Seattle, having a similar set of problems that Onalfo has had. I think when the Sounders sent Obafemi Martins packing, it left a big hole in their attack and then they fired Sigi just as Lodero was signed so that he never had the benefit of his contribution, which was tremendous. So, some justice for Sigi and maybe Onalfo will get another chance in the future.

  2. Onalfo was a lazy hire within a league that has far too many lazy hires of managers that should not be in charge. Glad for the league, and glad for LAG they gave this assistant manager-quality hire the boot.

    • I feel like I read this somewhere before … oh yeah, in the other thread about an MLS Cup and US Open Cup winning coach coming back to the league. Grow up troll.

  3. Ugh… I’d be ok with this if he was hired just for the rest of the season. But he has an MLS record for all to see, and it’s not that special. This, on top of the second Dos Santos joining the team, I’m starting to lose hope for the LAG…


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