Bruce Arena’s autobiography is coming out soon and, like any publication from a big controversial name, it reveals some interesting secrets, including what Arena would do differently if given the chance to do it all over again.
“I knew when I took the job that we had a steep road ahead of us,” he wrote in an advance copy of the book provided to the Washington Post. “If I had it all to do over again, I’d take the job again in a second, and even though people don’t want to hear it, I don’t think that, given the limited time I had, there is much I would do differently, either.”
Arena also talks about the firing of Jurgen Klinsmann in the upcoming book titled “What’s Wrong With US? A Coach’s Blunt Take on the State of American Soccer After a Lifetime on the Touchline.”
He tells how the federation began preparing to cixmixx Klinsmann six months before it actually happened, and it almost went down shortly before the Copa America Centenario. He also writes that he was lined up as the replacement that far ahead. “They said it was time for a change,” Arena wrote of a meeting between himself, then U.S. Soccer Federation president Sunil Gulati, and chief executive Dan Flynn.
However, the change couldn’t come until after the team’s loss to Costa Rica due to a heart surgery and subsequent recovery period for Flynn.
“I had trouble watching the Costa Rica game,” Arena wrote. “Seriously. It was uncomfortable for me to see the U.S. team playing that way, out of sync and at odds with one another, looking as though they didn’t really care all that much. … Those back-to-back losses were a fiasco for U.S. soccer, and no matter how much blame lay at Klinsmann’s feet, it was clear he’d coached his last game for the U.S.”
Arena’s book comes out on June 12.