CHICAGO (AP) — Former Major League Soccer coach Jason Kreis has been hired to run the U.S. under-23 team and tasked with the challenge of reaching next year's Olympic tournament after the Americans failed to qualify for the London and Rio de Janeiro Games.
He will coach the team for the first time in exhibitions on Friday against Egypt and Sunday versus the Netherlands, both in San Pedro del Pinatar, Spain.
The 46-year-old is a former U.S. national team player, like new senior national team coach Gregg Berhalter. Kreis enjoyed success as coach of Real Salt Lake from 2007-13, winning the 2009 MLS Cup title and reaching the finals of the 2011 CONCACAF Champions League and 2013 MLS Cup. He had less successful tenures with New York City from 2014-15 and Orlando from 2016-18.
Kreis made 14 appearances for the U.S. from 1996-2000 and was hired by U.S. national team general manager Earnie Stewart, his former American teammate. Kreis was hired in January for an unspecified role on the technical staff of David Beckham's Inter Miami MLS team, which starts play in 2020, and Kreis will continue in that role.
His contract with the U.S. Soccer Federation, announced Tuesday, runs through the 2020 Olympics.
The U.S. failed to qualify for 2012 under Caleb Porter and for 2016 under Andreas Herzog, the top assistant to then-national team coach Jurgen Klinsmann. The under-23 team has not played since March 2016, when it lost a playoff to Colombia for a berth in the Olympics.
Goalkeepers: Jonathan Klinsmann (Hertha Berlin, Germay), JT Marcinkowski (San Jose),
Defenders: Julian Araujo (LA Galaxy), Cameron Carter-Vickers (Swansea, England), Marco Farfan (Portland), Jack Maher (Indiana), Matthew
Olosunde (Manchester United, England), Donovan Pines (D.C. United), Lucas Pos (Lausanne, Switzerland), Antonee Robinson (Wigan, England), Miles Robinson (Atlanta)
Midfielders: Derrick Jones (Philadelphia), Cameron Lindley (Orlando), Djordje Mihailovic (Chicago), Keaton Parks (New York City), Eryk Williamson (Portland), Jackson Yueill (San Jose)
Forwards: Jeremy Ebobisse (Portland), Josh Perez (LAFC), Emmanuel Sabbi (Hobro, Denmark), Josh Sargent (Werder Bremen, Germany), Tim Weah (Celtic, Scotland), Haji Wright (Schalke, Germany)
Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.