I was reading some of the debate on BigSoccer about Klinsmann withdrawing and stumbled across a post from Dec 2nd from someone who talked with Sunil Gulati about the USMNT coach search. The conversation was an informal one (apparently Sunil was picking up his kid from a soccer game). Now you take a post like this with a grain of salt, but much of what this poster reported was confirmed today, which makes the section I highlighted below even more interesting.
I was pretty direct in the questions I asked him, he was surprisingly forthcoming with his answers. He told me that there will almost certainly be a new coach announced by the end of the week, but there’s a small chance it may be an interim coach (which he seemed dismayed by). I asked him if this was b/c the MNT has fixtures shortly after the new year, and he said yes, they would have no choice but to do this. In fact, he told me the Fed has already sent emails to some players asking them to start working on their fitness in advance of a January camp.
Apparently though, this is not b/c they haven’t offered the job to anyone. It sounded to me as if the Fed have had trouble on settling on terms with the people/person Gulati wants (I say people, b/c it sounded like he may have extended an offer to more than one person).
He intimated he wants Klinsmann and offered the job not only to him. Actually, I said, "On BigSoccer, he’s the consensus #1 choice", to which he jokingly replied, "Well, we want to keep the fans on BigSoccer happy" At one stage he also said, "We want Klinsmann too". So I asked him what the hold up was, was it money, wanting more control within the fed, "They all want more money and more control!". I definitely sensed though that he is really frustrated about the whole situation. Eventually he said, "We just need someone to take the job", which tells me that there’s some sort of impasse with candidate(s) over control, money, etc. Oh, he did tell me that while an interim coach might be American, the next USMNT coach definitely wouldn’t be.
This was posted 5 days ago and feels legit. I found it interesting that the poster, USAin2006, got the feeling that multiple offers had been extended. But that last section really stood out. Total guess on my part but it sounds like Sunil already knew things didn’t look good with Klinsmann and yet he still made the point that the next USMNT wouldn’t be
from the MLS American.
Just figured I’d pass this along – I found it very interesting. Here’s hoping Gulati is as forthcoming during tomorrow’s conference call. At least one regular poster on BigSoccer will be part of the call or privy to what is said so keep an eye out for details.