San Jose Earthquakes appoint USMNT assistant Luchi Gonzalez as head coach

The San Jose Earthquakes have appointed Luchi Gonzalez as their new head coach, the club announced Wednesday.

Gonzalez is currently serving as Gregg Berhalter’s assistant with the United States Men’s National Team and will take his place with the Quakes following the 2022 World Cup this winter. Until then, Alex Covelo will continue to serve as interim head coach as he has done since the early-season departure of Matias Almeyda.

“Luchi has all of the attributes that we sought in our next head coach,” Quakes general manager Chris Leitch in a club press release. “He has had success coaching in Major League Soccer with playoff appearances in his first two seasons and has a very strong track record in youth development.

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“His strengths and desires align with our short and long-term goals as a club, and we look forward to him taking the reins after the World Cup.”

Prior to his time with the USMNT, Gonzalez enjoyed a three-year spell as head coach of FC Dallas – leading them to back-to-back MLS Cup Playoffs appearances in 2019 and 2020 – having spent six years as the club’s academy director between 2012 and 2018.

Gonzalez was picked sixth overall by the Quakes in the 2002 MLS SuperDraft, making eight appearances for the club before a career that saw him play in Sweden and Peru, as well as back in the United States with the Colorado Rapids, Miami FC, and Minnesota Thunder.

“I’m really excited for this opportunity with one of the league’s founding clubs,” Gonzalez said. “I thoroughly enjoyed working with the club’s leadership team throughout the interview process and was impressed by their vision for the future, both on and off the field. Chris Leitch and his team have put together a solid foundation of players and I’m looking forward to working with them.

“As excited as I am for this opportunity, I’m going to remain focused on helping the US 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.”

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