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Shouldn’t Peter Vermes be in the future U.S. national team coaching discussions?


Coaching openings in Major League Soccer will soon be filled at Chivas USA, Vancouver, Dallas and (after last night’s big news) Real Salt Lake. We assume they will be, at least. I mean, tick-tock…tick-tock, guys! What are you waiting for?

But where domestic soccer coaching is concerned, let’s introduce one more element into the ongoing conversation:

Shouldn’t Peter Vermes name be mentioned when we start talking about successor to U.S. national team boss Jurgen Klinsmann?

(No, Klinsmann isn’t going anywhere for now. But history reminds us that so many international coaches last just one World Cup cycle, even if U.S. coaching longevity has owned a little more staying power. Either way, talking about the “next” U.S. manager, regardless of standing for the current top man, has always been a wonderful U.S. Soccer supporter pastime.)

For a few years now, two names have come up repeatedly, and deservedly so. If we assumed the next guy is will be as “born in the U.S.A.” as Bruce Springsteen – not saying he will be, but let’s assume for this particular exercise – then Jason Kreis and Dominc Kinnear are the always warming up in the bullpen of discussion.

Kinnear has always managed to get the most from the least in Houston. Not saying the Dynamo doesn’t have any talent; but this is a small budget operation, one that refuses to rely on pricey stars, so Kinnear gets it done through chemistry, drive, accountability and old-fashioned, common horse sense.

Kreis’ recent results speak for themselves; that’s why he’s the hand-picked choice of the league’s new glamour club, the Manchester City-owned New York City FC club.

But now we add Vermes’ name. Or we should.

Sporting KC’s record over the past three seasons: 48-26-28, a sterling mark considering the parity that generally rules MLS. Sporting’s placing in the Eastern Conference race over those seasons: 1st, 1st and 2nd.

Now he has an MLS Cup trophy to place as a cherry on that yummy sundae of a resume.

Vermes is a taskmaster and perfectionist, a hard worker, a demanding boss who is not afraid to put a star on the bench who isn’t pulling his weight (Benny Feilhaber and Claudio Bieler, most recently). Sounds like a solid platform for building a national team manager, eh?

Not saying he should be the choice … but he should definitely be in the conversation.

EURO 2016: Ireland shock Germany, Northern Ireland qualify

Shane Long, Ireland
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A recap of Thursday’s action in 2016 European Championship qualifying:

Ireland 1-0 Germany

Southampton striker Shane Long scored the goal that knocked off the defending world champions and pushed Ireland one step closer to next summer’s European Championship in France. Long, who entered the game in the 65th minute, latched onto Darren Randolph‘s ball over the top in the 70th minute, took one touch to settle and fired for the far post, beating Manuel Neuer for the game’s only goal.

With one game still to play, Ireland (18 points) sit third in Group D, level on points with Sunday’s opponent Poland. While the winner of Sunday’s clash could leapfrog Germany (19), they will more likely finish second in the group and qualify automatically. A draw on Sunday could still see both sides qualify automatically through the ranking of third-place finishers (the top third-place finishers from group play earns an automatic berth at EURO 2016).

Northern Ireland 3-1 Greece

Norther Ireland (20 points) topped Greece (3), 3-1 on Thursday to officially book their place at EURO 2016. Steven Davis scored twice and Josh Magennis added the third for Michael O’Neill’s side.

With one game still to play (Sunday, at Finland), Northern Ireland can finish no lower than second. A draw against Finland, or any points dropped by Romania (17) would see Northern Ireland finish top of Group F.

Portugal 1-0 Denmark

Joao Moutinho scored the only goal of the game to secure Portugal’s (18 points from just seven games) place at next summer’s tournament. The defeat sees Denmark remain second in Group I, a point ahead of third-place Albania, who lost to Serbia on Thursday. Having played all eight of their group games, Denmark can go no higher than 12 points, meaning they would fail to qualify if Albania beat Armenia on Sunday. A draw between Albania and Armenia would see Denmark qualify based on tiebreakers.

Elsewhere in EURO 2016 qualifying action

Group D

Scotland 2-2 Poland
Georgia 4-0 Gibraltar

Group F

Hungary 2-1 Faroe Islands
Romania 1-1 Finland

Group I

Albania 0-2 Serbia

Jurgen Klopp announced as new Liverpool manager

Jurgen Klopp, Liverpool FC
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Enough with the speculation and reports already, because it’s finally officially official: Jurgen Klopp has been appointed the newest manager of Liverpool Football Club, the Merseyside club announced on Thursday.

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s PL coverage ]

Klopp will be unveiled to the world at an introductory press conference at Anfield on Friday.

According to early reports, Klopp’s three-year contract could pay him as much as $10 million per season.

[ QUOTE KING: Top 10 “Klopp-isms” from his time at Dortmund ]

The 48-year-old German has been out of work since stepping down at Bundesliga side Borussia Dortmund following a seventh-place finish to the 2014-15 season. Klopp’s seven seasons in charge of Dortmund weren’t without success and silverware, though, as he led Der BVB to back-to-back league titles in 2011 and 2012, a German Cup triumph in 2012 and a UEFA Champions League final appearance in 2013.

PST’s Joe Prince-Wright will be at Anfield on Friday for Klopp’s unveiling, so be sure to follow JPW on Twitter and check back to PST for wall-to-wall coverage of Klopp’s first press conference as Liverpool manager.