Commentary

Bob Bradley throws some shade on Jurgen Klinsmann

Bob Bradley held his first press conference since being named manager of the English Premier League club Swansea City. He talked passionately and proudly about himself -- "I am not an American manager. I am a football manager" -- and about his work in Egypt, about his move to Europe at Norway's Stabaek, about leaving Le Havre and about Swansea City.

The trickiest question, he said, and his shortest answer? He also opened up about his exit as U.S. national team coach.



"From the day I got fired by the U.S.," he said. "I have not said one thing publicly about their team, all right? I don't appreciate the way it was done -- I think they made a mistake. I'm glad that Jurgen [Klinsmann] says some nice things now. When he did commentary on the 2010 World Cup, he was already jockeying for the job. So I’ve shut my mouth, and continue to support the team because I, of course, want to see the team do well. Michael’s the captain. So if he has said something in a nice way, I appreciate it. And if at some point he chooses to try to work again outside the U.S., I wish him the best."

Klinsmann on ESPN at the 2010 World Cup after the USA fell to Ghana in the round of 16:



Klinsmann replaced Bradley after the USA lost to Mexico, 4-2, in the Gold Cup final in 2011.

"I got fired by the U.S., my last game was the Gold Cup final against Mexico at the Rose Bowl," Bradley said. "It was a great game, 4-2; we were ahead 2-0, they tied it up by halftime. The second half was amazing. We lost 4-2; it was a hell of a game. But at some point, some people didn't realize that it was a great game. When Bayern was down and came back and beat Juventus 4-2 [in the UEFA Champions League round of 16 in March], I think everybody around Juventus was proud of the effort but, still, in the U.S., at that moment, maybe, we didn't see through all that."

He was also asked about if Klinsmann should be the England national team coach.

"My honest opinion is this: I think you have some very good coaches in England," Bradley said. "And I think there are times that it makes sense to go outside the country for a national team coach. But actually, in England, I think you’ve got to get the right guy from inside. That's my opinion, all right? I think you've got to get someone who absolutely is -- it means more to him than anything to take over as the England manager. And to re-establish the identity and do it in a way that all of the people in England are proud of. So I think you need to stay inside your country. That's my opinion."

Bradley also acknowledged that some Swansea City fans were skeptical about him and unhappy with the decision to fire Italian manager Francesco Guidolin.

"Let's be clear about one thing, no matter what your name is, if you come to the Premier League you have to earn respect," he said. "No one gets it on a plate. 'You get tested. In everything I've done in life, I've fully understood you have to earn respect. My father's real grandparents were from Scotland. I think the docks, maybe that's why I think I could be a good coach.

"At some point, my father got put into a state home and he goes in with the family, ends up in high school, Marines, gets a purple heart in Korea, marries my mom and has three boys. My father never talked about Marines, his upbringing, the only thing that mattered to him was that we understood what was right and whatever you want to do in life you have to work hard and earn respect. I've learned that lesson. I get it. I will be myself here and I will show it every day to get that.

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12 comments about "Bob Bradley throws some shade on Jurgen Klinsmann".
  1. brett wyatt, October 7, 2016 at 8:59 p.m.

    "Throws some shade"...Please, stop.

  2. TJ Girouard, October 7, 2016 at 10 p.m.

    What's Brett said...making something out of nothing does what for helpful dialogue exactly...?

  3. Mark Konty, October 7, 2016 at 11:28 p.m.

    Paul Kennedy has an extreme hate-on for JK. Klinsmann could lead the US to a World Cup title and the only thing Kennedy would do is complain about the style of soccer.

  4. Vince Leone, October 8, 2016 at 1:37 a.m.

    You would have to be insane to disagree with anything JK says in that video from 2010. If that's what Bradley is complaining about, he's off base. Who knows though, because SA apparently didn't ask Bradley what he was referring to. Poor journalism, IMHO.

  5. Gus Keri, October 8, 2016 at 3:49 a.m.

    Bradley should not have mentioned Klinsmann at all. There was no reason for that comment whatsoever. Bradley is endangering his son's status at the USMNT. Klinsmann might take it personal and retaliate.

  6. Andy Cap replied, October 8, 2016 at 11:27 a.m.

    I would hope Klinsmann will be more professional than Bradley is acting right now and not respond or retaliate against Bradley's son.

    Bradley just needs to stop talking so much.Do what he does best and what has brought him success and given him this
    opportunity.... Work hard and smart like
    he has always done. His success is the only way to silence any critics he may have. Personally I hope he has a fantastic showing in the job.

  7. Bob Ashpole, October 8, 2016 at 11:26 a.m.

    These comments about the article are so far out of touch with reality I have to wonder if the writers actually read the article and watched the you tube clips. "Throw some shade" is a metaphor referring to Bradley's employment as the manager of an EPL team as a higher pinnacle for a coach than coaching the US MNT. Bradley wasn't interviewed by Soccer America. Bradley was asked the question about JK at the press conference in Wales after he tried to steer the questions away from his experiences in the US. Bradley said that JK was promoting himself for the coaching job, not disagreeing with his comments about youth soccer in this country. JK's comments like these gave rise to expectations that JK would actually do something different than previous coaches with the MNT program and improve youth soccer. He hasn't which is why a lot of people are disappointed with the lack of progress since he took over. While I have never seen JK claim credit for the transformation of the youth development system in Germany, ill informed people apparently assumed that was his work. JK created impossibly high expectations for himself and what we got was 5 years with no growth in either area. That is the problem with JK's 2010 comments. JK did not say anything about soccer in the US that 100s of others haven't said before or since.

  8. Kent James replied, October 8, 2016 at 11:56 a.m.

    Thanks for the "throw some shade" explanation, and everything else is well-said.

  9. Graham VanSwearingen replied, October 10, 2016 at 9:59 a.m.

    Bob, I beg to differ on JK impacting youth soccer, one of the things he has done that I am in strong agreement on (most things I find him middling at) is the changes he pressed for from USSF those were a major set of changes in the licsencing and coaching training. He did not align them with other such systems (e.g. UEFA licsencing) but produced a clear and distinct continuity in coaching. This will in time change soccer in America, but it takes time for these things to bear fruit. The rest of what you said I am in agreement with for sure.

  10. Bob Ashpole replied, October 10, 2016 at 12:04 p.m.

    If USSF educated instead of just licensed and if the execution of the policy were actually improved, I would agree with you. USSF however does not actually manage the licenses for coaches likely to be training youth. The facts of the matter are that a license doesn't guarantee competence and there are few licensed coaches training youth anyway. I don't consider E and F licenses significant except a sign of some ambition.

  11. Nalin Carney, October 8, 2016 at 1:39 p.m.

    All the best to you Mr Bradley ! I have never thought K. was right for the job, but none the less he got it, I do not understand why he is still employed by U.S. Soccer. I feel it is right for the US to use home grown coaches that understand the American mentality....but I also think there can be a foreign coach, if he is the right fit. Your journey has taken you around the globe because of your ability to coach and be honest. Thanks , Again for your service in the beautiful game.

  12. Daniel Clifton, October 9, 2016 at 10:55 a.m.

    I'll never forget that "the Pyramid is upside down" comment. Talk about hitting the nail on the head. Of course he wasn't the only person in the US who saw it that way. He just said it on national television. So I was glad when he was hired. I like many other people thought he was going to get involved with changing the youth system to reflect the comments he made in that discussion of US soccer. Unfortunately he has not done that. I believe he has grown as a manager. You look at his line ups for the Copa American and he has obviously learned some lessons such as keeping the same 11 in the starting line up, particularly in the back. My biggest disappointment with JK is that he apparently has done nothing to change the youth system in the US. I still see pay to play as the operating system. Has he done anything to get inner city kids involved in soccer like he talked about in this video? No, as far as I know. That too me is what I do not understand about his tenure as national team coach. Maybe he hasn't been given that authority. If so, then why was he hired in the first place. As for Bob Bradley, he deserves this hire. He has worked for it. I am not sure why he made the comments he did about JK. JK was almost hired before Bradley was, so why is he making the comment about JK jockeying for the job in 2010. He had already jockeyed for the job in like 2006. I appreciate Bradley's comments about that 4-2 loss. That was an extremely exciting game. The kind of game I would like to see more of. I just remember how dynamic Dos Santos was in that game. He was on fire.

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