Sources: Berhalter set for USMNT contract talks

DOHA, Qatar — United States men’s national team manager Gregg Berhalter is set to begin discussions on a new contract with the U.S. Soccer Federation, sources have told ESPN.

One source acknowledged it’s still very early in the process, and other sources have indicated that Berhalter is interested in exploring European club options.

The US are coming off a World Cup in which it finished second in Group B to reach the round of 16, where they fell 3-1 to the Netherlands. Following the US team’s exit, Berhalter said he needed some time to “decompress” before deciding on his future, but the USSF is prepared to begin talks on a new contract. Berhalter’s existing deal expires at the end of the year, and the USSF has scheduled a January camp that will be largely composed of domestic players and will conclude with friendlies against Serbia on Jan. 25 and against Colombia three days later.

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Berhalter was hired on Dec. 2, 2018, in the wake of the US team’s failure to qualify for the 2018 World Cup. His biggest task was rebuilding a side with young players, and he achieved that goal by integrating the likes of Tyler Adams, Weston McKennie and Timothy Weah into a squad that already had Christian Pulisic in its ranks. He also successful recruited dual nationals Sergino Dest and Yunus Musah, both of whom played significant roles at the World Cup.

After early struggles, Berhalter’s teams hit their stride starting in the summer of 2021, claiming the inaugural CONCACAF Nations League crown as well as that year’s Gold Cup, defeating Mexico on both occasions. World Cup qualifying proved to be more of a slog, but the US ultimately got the job done, claiming the third and final automatic qualification spot over Costa Rica on goal differential.

All told, Berhalter’s record with the US stands at 37-11-12. He previously managed the Columbus Crew in MLS from 2014-18 as well as Swedish side Hammarby from late 2011 to 2013.

As a player, Berhalter enjoyed a 17-year career that saw him play for Dutch sides Zwolle, Sparta Rotterdam, and Cambuur Leeuwarden. He spent a solitary season at English side Crystal Palace before moving to Germany with Energie Cottbus and 1860 Munich, and then concluding his career with the LA Galaxy.

At the international level, Berhalter represented the U.S. 44 times and was part of the 2002 and 2006 World Cup squads.

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