Los Angeles FC has appointed Steve Cherundolo as head coach ahead of the 2022 Major League Soccer season.
Cherundolo spent 2021 as leader of USL Championship team Las Vegas Lights, which serves as LAFC’s affiliate.
The Western Conference side’s new manager also stands as one of the most decorated players in US men’s national team history, acquiring over 15 years of playing experience in Germany’s Bundesliga.
“I am extremely excited to introduce Steve as our next head coach,” LAFC co-president & general manager John Thorrington said.
“We know what works for LAFC and what works in MLS, and Steve has a unique blend of international and domestic experience at the highest levels that matches those needs.
“We have seen this past year how great a fit he is with the LAFC culture, how well he knows our players and our philosophy, and that he is the ideal choice to lead us to on-field success.”
He replaces Bob Bradley, who left to become Toronto FC’s head coach and sporting director after four years with the California team.
Prior to Las Vegas, Cherundolo worked in Hannover 96’s academy and as an assistant for their first team. He also served as an assistant of VfB Stuttgart in 2018, then coached in the German national team youth system.
“I am honored to be named the head coach of LAFC,” Cherundolo said.
“Having been a part of the club for the past year, I was able to see firsthand that the fans, city and organization are all very special. The foundation is strong, and I am committed to guiding us to success on and off the field. I can’t wait to get started.”
As a player, he amassed 87 USMNT caps, including a spot on three FIFA World Cup rosters (2002, ’06, ’10) and recorded 415 appearances for Hannover 96 at club level.
“We believe Steve is the right coach for LAFC at this important time in our history,” LAFC lead managing owner Larry Berg said in a release.
“We have always had high expectations for our club both on and off the field, and I know our incredible fans do as well.
“We have a talented group of players, and I am confident we are going to add even more exciting talent to that group very soon. We believe that Steve is the coach who will harness that talent, win important matches, and give our fans a team they are proud to support.”