After a tumultuous run in the 2011 Gold Cup, the United States Soccer Federation has fired Bob Bradley, ending more than four and a half years of the head coach at the helm of the U.S. team.
Many are wondering who will replace Bradley, and a decision might be very imminent.
The name popping up most is no surprise: Jurgen Klinsmann.
The former German national team great lives in Southern California, has strong command of the English language, and has experience as an international coach after managing Germany from 2004-2006. Germany was expected to be the favorites to win the 2006 World Cup on their home soil, but lost in the semifinals. Few experts blamed Klinsmann for not doing more with the team.
According to rumors, Klinsmann might be named head coach sometime soon.
But does Klinsmann want the job? Klinsmann tends to place a high value on his privacy, and appreciates his time away from the game, so he is certainly not a sure thing to accept the position. He turned the job down in 2007, but has since said he would reconsider it if offered again.
With the U.S. lacking in an elite pure striker, Klinsmann, a former star forward, could be instrumental in upgrading the position. Jozy Altidore, Charlie Davies, and Juan Agudelo have shown promise, but it's an area where the U.S. desperately needs to improve.
Another name that has received a great deal of speculation is Guus Hiddink, a well-traveled coach with an impressive track record. However, according to Yahoo! Sports there was no indication that Hiddink would leave his current position with the Turkish national team.
Other candidates include American Jason Kreis, the head coach for Real Salt Lake. Of all the teams in MLS, Real Salt Lake tends to play with the best style, and much of the credit could go to Kreis for that. He has some experience as a player with the U.S. team, and is well-liked by players.
An option that might be on the table is Klinsmann's former Germany teammate Rudi Voller, who also served as head coach of Germany from 2000-2004. Voller is highly regarded, but has been inactive from coaching for the past six years. He guided the Germany to the World Cup Finals in 2002.
For Bradley, his time at the helm of the U.S. team had its highs and lows. With the U.S. looking done in the Confederations Cup in 2009, the U.S. battled back, and defeated eventual World Cup 2010 Champions Spain, 2-0. Against Brazil in the Final, the U.S. had a 2-0 lead at halftime, and Brazil went on to score three unanswered goals, to win the tournament.
In the 2011 Gold Cup, the U.S. had another two-goal lead against Mexico at the Rose Bowl, only to surrender four goals, and lose 4-2. Since that match, and including some uneven performances in the tournament, Bradley has been on the hot seat.
Bradley is well-respected in American coaching circles after succeeding famed coach Bruce Arena. He also over-achieved in MLS with Chicago Fire and Chivas USA.
After the 2010 World Cup, Bradley's name generated interest from Premier League club Aston Villa.