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Jurgen Klopp rebuffs approach to coach USMNT after Copa America exit

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Jurgen Klopp rebuffs approach to coach USMNT after Copa America exit


Jurgen Klopp has rebuffed an approach from the United States Soccer Federation (USSF) to take over as the men’s national team head coach following the dismissal of Gregg Berhalter.

Initial contact was made with Klopp regarding the possibility of leading the USMNT but he reiterated that he would like a break from football, according to sources privy to the matter. Despite that, interest remains, sources add, from US Soccer in making the 57-year-old their next head coach.

Berhalter was sacked on Wednesday following the USMNT’s disappointing group-stage exit at this summer’s Copa America, which was hosted on home soil.

Klopp formally departed as manager of Liverpool in May, ending a transformative nine-year tenure at Anfield which brought eight major honours.

“I love absolutely everything about this club, I love everything about the city, I love everything about our supporters, I love the team, I love the staff. I love everything. But that I still take this decision shows you that I am convinced it is the one I have to take,” he said upon announcing his exit in January.

“It is that I am running out of energy. I have no problem now, obviously, I knew it already for longer that I will have to announce it at one point, but I am absolutely fine now. I know that I cannot do the job again and again and again and again.”

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Klopp enjoyed a successful spell at Anfield (Michael Regan/Getty Images)

Under his leadership, Liverpool secured their first Premier League title in 30 years and won their first Champions League since 2005 when they defeated Tottenham Hotspur in 2019.

The approach to Klopp comes as the U.S. gears up for the 2026 World Cup, which it will co-host alongside Canada and Mexico, aiming to improve on their round-of-16 exit in Qatar 18 months ago.

U.S. Soccer’s sporting director, Matt Crocker, emphasized the urgency of their coaching search following Berhalter’s dismissal, which came after a “comprehensive review” into the team’s performance at the Copa America.

“Our immediate focus is on finding a coach who can maximize our potential as we continue to prepare for the 2026 World Cup, and we have already begun our search process,” he stated.

Berhalter’s exit followed a mixed tenure marked by both achievements and controversies.

Despite leading the USMNT to the knockout stage of the 2022 World Cup and winning two CONCACAF Nations League titles and a Gold Cup, his reappointment last summer came as a surprise. Issues with key players, including a high-profile conflict with young star Gio Reyna, and a series of lacklustre results culminating in the Copa America disappointment, ultimately led to his dismissal.

The USMNT’s Copa America campaign saw them defeat Bolivia 2-0, but losses to Panama and Uruguay resulted in an early exit, making them the first host country to be eliminated in the group stage since the tournament adopted a single host nation format in 1987.

Reflecting on the performance, Crocker said: “Our tournament performance fell short of our expectations. We must do better.”

Additional reporting: Greg O’Keefe and James Pearce

(Top photo: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)



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