It is one of the most interesting debates in all of international football: the nationality of the coach. Many fans hold strong opinions on who they would prefer holding the reins of their team in the clutch, whether it is one of their own or a foreigner pacing the sideline.
The United States' hire of Jurgen Klinsmann proved that the USSF is not afraid to look outside the country for a new coach, a tactic that many international federations still haven't accepted in this modern age.
Here is a study on the pros and cons of a foreign/American coach and how the two have fared in the US since 1990. Enjoy!
Fresh Start — One popular fan criticism of Bob Bradley was the fact that his son affected his gameplanning and made it unfair for the rest of the midfield. No matter what your opinions on the whole Bradley debacle may be, you must agree that bringing in a foreign coach avoids these sticky situations and at least shows that there are no biases or prejudices with the roster.
Foreign Influence — By far the most attractive characteristic of a foreign coach is the possible overseas youth connections he could have that could bring in the next hybrid-American superstar. Since Klinsmann has arrived, we have already seen German-Americans Timothy Chandler and Fabian Johnson commit their future to the United States with plenty more dual-citizenship players possibly still on the mend. It excites fans to see players CHOOSE to play for the United States, and a foreign coach could certainly influence enough talent to keep supporters happy for a while.
Foreign Ideas — Foreign coaches can bring in their respective soccer culture and thrust it upon the national team, providing a change of pace and letting the players explore a new style. New ideas let players see the game differently and develop their soccer IQ.
Foreign Coaches — (After 1990)
Bora Milutinovic — 1991-1995, 30-35-31
Jurgen Klinsmann — 2011-, 0-1-2
Nationalism — While many may not mind, certainly there must be a few fans out there that truly believe a team must be coached by one of their own. Simply put, some fans may have a closer relation to a home-bred coach rather than one who was simply shipped overseas to take the job from another American.
More MLS Knowledge — One thing that Bob Bradley did especially well was using the MLS as a resource and discovering multiple top young talents in the league worth developing. Since the MLS is young and relatively unpopular in other countries, it should be assumed that local coaches would have a better understanding of the league and what types of hidden gems it contains.
American Coaches (After 1990)
Steve Sampson —1995-1998, 27-13-21
Bruce Arena — 1998-2006, 71-30-29
Bob Bradley — 2006-2011, 43-25-12
What is your opinion on the situation? If the USMNT was starting from scratch all over again, would you rather have an American holding the reins, or a foreigner take over the USMNT? Comment below.