Globe-trotting Klinsmann a perfect fit for U.S.

Sat Jun 7, 2014 2:40am EDT
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By Julian Linden

NEW YORK (Reuters) - For a man who has spent half his life living and playing in foreign countries, Juergen Klinsmann seems the perfect fit as the United States head coach.

Personifying the mantra that you should practice what you preach, Klinsmann's globe-trotting exploits have made him the ideal man to lead an American team drawn from all corners of the world.

A lethal striker who scored 47 goals in 108 international appearances, Klinsmann's playing credentials are beyond dispute.

He was part of the West Germany team that won the World Cup in 1990, and Euro '96 as a unified nation, and used his sublime talents to travel the world, playing for clubs in England, Italy, France and his birthland.

He made an enormous impact in England, where he was named Footballer of the Year in his one full season at Tottenham Hotspur in 1994-95, later returning to the club on loan and almost single-handedly saving them from relegation in 1998.

He won honors with Inter Milan and Bayern Munich and also played with VfB Stuttgart, Monaco and Sampdoria.

When his playing days were over, he settled in California where he married an American and began a family, but the lure of returning to the game proved irresistible.

In 2004, he took over as head coach of the German national team, guiding them to the semi-finals of the 2006 World Cup, and also briefly served as head coach of Bayern Munich in 2008.   Continued...

Jurgen Klinsmann, head coach of the U.S. men's national soccer team, speaks to the media during a news conference in New York City, May 30, 2014.  REUTERS/Mike Segar