By MICHAEL FRANCA
U.S. Soccer men’s national team manager Jurgen Klinsmann has come under intense scrutiny over the course of the past week. Following two dismal displays — a 2-1 loss to Mexico and a 4-0 drubbing at the hands of Costa Rica — the calls for his job have gotten louder.
When U.S. Soccer president Sunil Gulati was asked following the Costa Rica match whether or not they were mulling a change, he remained noncommittal.
“We’ll think about what happened today and talk with Jurgen and look at the situation,” he said.
According to ESPN FC, the U.S. Soccer Federation has been in contact with potential replacements for almost a year. Still, three days removed from the last game, Klinsmann’s status remains in limbo.
Interestingly, the opinion across American media is almost unanimous that he should be fired. For example, Grant Wahl, a senior writer for Sports Illustrated, recently wrote an article titled “It’s time for USA to move on from Jurgen Klinsmann.”
In addition to Wahl’s SI piece, Yahoo Sports, ESPN, FOX Sports, Bleacher Report, and SB Nation have all published columns calling for Klinsmann to lose his job. On top of that, many of the same major sports publications have already moved on to reporting a list of potential replacements.
This, of course, is not a promising sign for Klinsmann. While Gulati and the USSF are ultimately in charge of the decision, the mounting pressure could force their hand.
This is an example of the power of media and its ability to create change, at least in the world of sports.