SAN JOSE, Calif. (KRON) The San Jose Earthquakes have announced United States Men’s National Team Assistant Coach Luchi Gonzalez as the club’s new manager.
Gonzalez, 42, will take over in San Jose following the conclusion of the World Cup in December.
“As excited as I am for this opportunity, I’m going to remain focused on helping the U.S. national team be as successful as possible through the FIFA World Cup and I will be ready to give everything for San Jose once that journey is over,” said Gonzalez at an introductory press conference.
Interim coach Alex Covelo will lead the team until the end of the MLS season. Covelo has been at the helm since the Earthquakes fired Matias Alymeda in April after a 0-5-4 start to the season.
Gonzalez joined Gregg Berhalter’s USMNT staff in December of 2021. Prior to that, he managed FC Dallas for nearly three seasons, leading the team to back-to-back playoff appearances in 2019 and 2020. Gonzalez was let go late in the 2021 season after the team posted a 6-11-9 record.
Before his stint as head coach, Gonzalez spent six years leading the highly successful FC Dallas academy program. He’s credited with developing a host of players who went on to successful professional careers, including USMNT players Kellyn Acosta, Jesus Ferreira, and Weston McKennie.
“I’ve gone through my phase and matured and taken my steps to understand the balance of development and competition,” said Gonzalez. “Everything I’ve learned through my former experiences in Dallas have led me to this moment to grab the opportunity in San Jose. Yes, development is going to be important, but the ambition is to win.”
Gonzalez’s move to San Jose is a full circle moment for the former MLS forward who was drafted by the Earthquakes in 2002. He only made a few appearances in blue before he was acquired by the Columbus Crew following his rookie season.
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The Earthquakes hope Gonzalez’s return to San Jose will revitalize a team that has struggled for the better part of the last decade. San Jose currently is 13th out of 14 teams in the Western Conference with a 5-9-11 record.
The Earthquakes front office reiterated their commitment to winning during Gonzalez’s press conference.
Gonzalez said he believes the recipe for success is a delicate balance of developing the Quakes Academy program and taking the steps necessary to get immediate results at the first team level. He plans to get to work quickly following the World Cup in Qatar.
“We must make the playoffs next year. That is going to be our mentality, our objective, but the process is most important to me,” said Gonzalez. “The steps and the process, and how you get there, and how you play on the field, how you develop the team and build that roster. That’s where the work has got to be done.”