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Report: Garth Lagerwey a candidate for USMNT GM as search begins

The search for the U.S. Men’s National Team’s newly-created general manager position is set to begin, and reports indicate that there’s at least one early candidate.

According to Sports Illustrated, Seattle Sounders GM Garth Lagerwey has emerged as an early candidate for the position set to be created under newly-elected president Carlos Cordeiro. After winning the U.S. Soccer election over the weekend, Cordeiro is reportedly set to meet with U.S. Soccer CEO Dan Flynn on Wednesday to begin narrowing down a list of candidates.

Whoever is hired will report to Flynn and not Cordeiro, the report says, while the GM will also oversee technical decisions like the upcoming head coaching hire.

Lagerwey has been with the Sounders since 2015 and helped construct the roster of the club’s 2016 MLS Cup championship team. Prior to his time with the Sounders, Lagerwey built Real Salt Lake into a powerhouse while winning the 2009 MLS Cup.


  1. I believe the GM should be someone with these characteristics:

    1. Played at a high level(Europe top 5 league)

    2. At least some coaching or FO experience preferably in a top league

    3. Understanding of USSoccer and our strengths and weaknessess/problems

    I do not believe the GM needs to be an MLS GM who was an MLS journeyman at best and biggest upside to the position is his FO experience and business connections to MLS. You need a GM who has the playing experience to be able to make the correct hiring decisions for MNT manager and TD. Judging from Lagerway’s hiring of Schmetzer at the Sounders I think its likely if he does become GM that the odds of hiring a MLS manager to become the next USMNT manager are very high. I don’t believe that guys who never played at a high level are capable of understanding the nuance and strategy needed to succeed in highly competitive international football. We need a player who also has the FO experience in this role.

    That said, who out their fits my criteria. I like the idea of Earnie Stewart that was mentioned in a post above. Also like Claudio Reyna has FO experience and worked with Man City setup for a while and a legend as a player. Brad Friedal too even though he just started with the Revs. Hugo Perez, played at a high level but not as much FO experience but a guy who definitely understands USSoccer’s strengths and weaknesses/problems. Thomas Dooley, played at a high level and is currently the NT manager of the Philippines Steve Cherundolo also legend and coaching experience in Germany. Finally Carlos Bocanegra, legend and FO experience for a MLS that does things very differently. Gregg Berhalter perhaps also. Outside of these names I think we have to start looking for someone outside the US which would mean someone not as familiar with our struggles but could bring new fresh ideas to how we manage our NT setup. Some of these names may also be on the same list for TD or even manager I would hope. I would be very happy with either of Earnie Stewart or Claudio Reyna.

    • Also, Gareth is an ex player with 0 USMNT caps and never played a minute of international football. Someone who never coached or played in the international game seems unqualified to make hiring decisions on manager and TD, I mean isn’t that the setup we’ve had for the past 20 years, people with no international playing experience making hiring decisions. Do we really want more of that?

      • I disagree. Garth has been a success at evaluating players at both Real Salt Lake and the Sounders, and has the championships to prove it. I don’t think you need to have played international soccer, or even pro soccer, at a high level to be a good evaluator of talent and an excellent communicator who can keep those involved in the player pool informed, and those who are dual-internationals or on the fringe of the pool feeling the love.

        Plus Garth knows MLS well, and I’m sure knows of many of the US players around the world. And I don’t think he’ll be pre-disposed to hire someone with whom he has ties. It doesn’t mean that Jason Kreis or Sigi Schmid will get the job over a foreign coach or someone else deserving in the US.

    • Mark’s comment is an example of an ongoing problem with the US fan base, that problem is believing success in MLS will transfer to the international game. Sometime it does more often it doesn’t. The GM will be overseeing things outside of the USMNT of course but he will be judged on the hiring decisions he makes on MNT manager and MNT TD. What experience at the international level does Gareth have to adequately evaluate those hiring decisions. Other than scouting low budget concacaf players absolutely zero. Just because a player or manager or FO official is a hit in MLS does not mean they have the skill set for the international game.

      • You’re full of sh—, Joe “basura” In the past you was pushing for ” angry” Eric Wynalda as a US Federation President, who didn’t have the character, knowledge , integrity and administrative experience , that now you’re talking about.

      • Joe, I think it’d be useful if you could provide some examples of what success and failure looks like in terms of MLS people doing well or not internationally. Are you speaking about things in general, players who either made the jump up or not, from a coaching perspective, etc.? Not many examples I can think of from a front office perspective.

    • Wasn’t a huge Wynalda supporter just want someone without ties to SUM and a change agent. That said, although I’m giving Cordeiro a chance I’d still take Wynalda/Martino over Cordeiro all day.

      And, if I remember correctly you the guy who says USSF was saved by MLS/SUM and USSF wouldn’t exist without MLS/SUM. That sort of fan intelligence is why we as a nation suck at soccer.

      • Wow : Fanatic or naïve, ? hum both. Compare the resume of C. Cordeiro with “angry” Eric Wynalda? Cordeiro : Harvard University and Harvard College and top executive of Golman Sacks, where you and “angry” Eric not even map the floors of this institution. “angry” Eric : barely finish high school and has one year of college and his only experience is reading the news in the Fox sport channel. So….
        The US Federation is before and after the MLS. Did you know what is the source of the Federation income ? USMNT team and t.v. deals arrange for SUM and with 100% players of the MLS league or not? Everything is related with MLS and thanks to Alan Rothenger, Mr Phillip Anschutz, Lamar Hunt , R. Kraft, M. Abbot and believe or not Mr Sunil Gulati all MLS soccer/football people , put the US Federation in the world map.
        Fanatic , naïve and I’ll add stupid, boy.

  2. While Cordeiro is at it, I would like to see the publication of an official org chart of all individuals in the USSF with official titles. While I do think Cordeiro was probably the best among the candidates and I’m happy to give him a chance, it was somewhat illumiunating to hear he started as an “independent director”. Exactly what does that mean??? How many other individuals are out there with that title? Are they paid? What is their mandate/power?

    As a practical example of why this “matters”, consider the guys like Blanc/Allardyce who claim they had been approached or “sounded out” about their interest in the US head coach job. While it’s common knowledge that coaches looking for gigs like to drum up interest in the press, I wonder how many people are wandering around out there with a title like “independent director” who can do these sorts of things on a semi-official basis. Some real transparency would maybe be a nice starting point from Cordeiro, no?

  3. The only problem I have with this guy Lagerway is that He probably is going to hire as Head coach some of his dinosaurs friends : S. Schmidt, B.Schmetzer, or some other of the MLS, instead of an experience foreign head coach. I’ll prefer somebody like E. Stewart , B. Manning or Nelson Rodriguez as GM of the USMNT.

  4. Not against the possibility of him just hope he isn’t an MLS pusher and helps hire best manager available no matter where they are from

  5. Seems like Earnie Stewart ought to be at the top of this list. Carlos Bocanegra? Someone who has had their feet in Europe, US and Mexico is probably best bet.

      • Earnie Stewart would have my vote. He was under consideration for the Netherlands head job- no small feat given the competition.

      • Two years ago I would have been totally behind bringing in Stewart to head the NT efforts, but his inability to do ANYTHING with the Union has soured me on him.
        A large part of the problem is the lack of $$ since the owner is broke, but a technical director has to work with the resources given to him. There he has failed.
        He has been responsible for only 3 decent quality players over the last two years. None of which have been a #10 that they have needed for two years. The only players they have brought in this year are three homegrowns (not ES), Cory Burke promoted from Bethlehem Steel (not ES), and Accam. This after dropping 9+ from last year’s roster.
        I had high hopes on the guy, but I am not impressed at the moment.

  6. This is a promising start to the new leadership at US Soccer. Lagerway is a Goldberg candidate. I also think guys like Kyle Martino, Paul Caliguri, etc…could be a good fit in this role. I’d also recommend that they have a separate GM to oversee the USWNT efforts.

    • I am struggling to understand why so many people are high on Kyle Martino. He was a great college player, but not a very good pro and not international quality by any means. The real headscratcher for me is that he has no coaching, front office, or administrative experience that would be necessary for the types of positions that people think he should be filling now.

      • Everyone who ran in this election who did not like Sunil Gulati experienced a boost in popularity and credibility amongst internet commenters. Even Hope Solo! Charles Manson died before he had a chance to get in on this thing…..

  7. It would be interesting to see US Soccer’s organization chart complete with unfilled positions just to see who will be in charge of what.

    Lagerway is more of a soccer guy than Cordiero so even if he is not the final choice, it does appear that Cordeiro is attempting to find people who can complement his weaknesses.


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