The US Men’s National Team will see the return of coach Gregg Berhalter following an investigation carried out on behalf of the US Soccer Federation.
An independent investigation lasting months has now concluded, with Berhalter being given a new contract which will see him manage the USMNT at the 2026 World Cup, due to be held in the USA, Canada and Mexico. This will see him return to the job after several months in limbo.
Under Berhalter the USMNT had a 2022 World Cup campaign deemed successful by many people. The country qualified from the group stages after draws against England and Wales, ending their group stage campaign with a 1-0 win against Iran that sent Berhalter’s side through to the knockouts.
The US, unfortunately, suffered a 3-1 defeat against the Netherlands in the Second Round, but the 2022 tournament was widely regarded as positive overall.
A young USMNT side recently defeated Canada 2-0 in the CONCACAF Nations League Final, with Folarin Balogun scoring his first goal after he became eligible to play for his country. Notably, Gio Reyna provided the assists for both goals.
Berhalter’s record as manager of the USA is the best in the nation’s history, with a 71% success rate, winning 37, drawing 11 and losing 12.
Berhalter had a long career as a professional player himself, making 358 appearances and spending 15 years playing in Europe with Sparta Rotterdam, Cambuur Leeuwarden, Crystal Palace, Energie Cottbus and 1860 Munich. He finished his playing career after making 73 appearances for the LA Galaxy.
He also gained 44 international caps for the US. He began his coaching career at the LA Galaxy as an assistant, before managing Hammarby IF in Sweden and the Columbus Crew SC in the MLS, before getting the job as USMNT coach in 2018.
With Berhalter now returning to the USMNT, the team appear to be getting better and better. The young squad is constantly building up experience and the future is exciting for the team. With the squad having several players in their early 20s, come the World Cup in four years’ time many of them will have gained much-needed experience.
Meanwhile, the MLS is getting stronger each season, with the signing of Lionel Messi being the biggest transfer in the history of the league, along with rumours of Sergio Busquets and Jordi Alba potentially making a move to the States. These transfers should help the development of the US team, as the overall competitiveness of the league will hopefully increase.
The USMNT will now focus on upcoming tournaments and friendlies to get in the best possible shape for the 2026 World Cup campaign. High expectations have been put on the US already, following a decent showing in Qatar and their host status in 2026, giving them home advantage.
The chance to represent your national team at a World Cup in your home country doesn’t come around often and Berhalter’s strong record as USMNT manager could help his country in what promises to be an exciting tournament.