USA interim Anthony Hudson committed to staying in charge

USA interim head coach Anthony Hudson is committed to staying in charge of ‘really special team’ for ‘as long as I’m asked to’ amid US Soccer probe into ex-boss Gregg Berhalter

  • USMNT interim manager Anthony Hudson will give everything to the team
  • He was given temporary control following bombshell ‘blackmail’ scandal
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USA interim head coach Anthony Hudson plans to keep giving his all to the national team until he’s told to stop.

The temporary boss has absolutely no idea when that will happen – or even who that somebody would be, since the US Soccer Federation’s search for the person who will hire the next permanent coach is only just beginning.

Hudson took charge of his first game this week – a 2-1 friendly loss to Serbia – following the expiration of Gregg Berhalter’s contract and the bombshell revelation from Gio Reyna’s parents that the ex-head coach kicked his wife in 1991 with an investigation still ongoing. 

USA interim head coach Anthony Hudson has vowed to leave the team ‘in a good place’

Ex-US coach Gregg Berhalter went public about kicking his wife Rosalind during row in 1991

His short-term appointment is looking a bit more lengthy now, but Hudson is keeping his focus on the near future, starting with the Americans’ friendly against Colombia on Saturday. 

He also won’t say whether he’s hoping to be a candidate for the full-time position.

‘My focus is just to keep preparing the team for as long as I’m asked to do it,’ Hudson said Friday after the final practice of the US team’s annual January camp in Southern California.

Jonathan Gomez (left) and Paxten Aaronson (right) head out for training ahead of next friendly

‘I wasn’t really expecting any of this, how this has evolved.

‘When we get (home), I’m going to focus on the next window, and if I’m still asked to do the one after that, I’m going to prepare for that one.

‘I’m going to continue to do all I can. This is a really special team. I know how important this national team is, and I’m going to do all I can to make sure it’s in a good place for whoever comes in. Whenever that is.’

Hudson’s first game in charge ended in defeat by Serbia on Wednesday night in Los Angeles

Sporting Director Earnie Stewart quit Thursday, less than a week after the announced departure of men’s general manager Brian McBride. 

USSF President Cindy Parlow Cone said the establishment of a new hierarchy – starting with a new Sporting Director, who will be in charge of hiring the next coach – could take many months to sort out.

All Hudson knows for sure is that he’ll be in charge for two CONCACAF Nations League matches in March. Given the current chaos above him, the Seattle-born Englishman’s tenure seems quite likely to extend into the CONCACAF Gold Cup tournament, which begins in June and concludes July 16 at nearby SoFi Stadium.

Hudson, who has coached the Colorado Rapids and the national teams of New Zealand and Bahrain, is publicly taking it all in stride.

‘My focus is for however long it is, just to keep doing all I can to progress the team and prepare the team, starting in March, and that’s it,’ he added Friday. ‘Obviously, it seems a fluid situation, but that’s my focus right now.’

USA defender Walker Zimmerman praised work of Hudson ahead of his second game at helm

Hudson became Berhalter’s assistant in 2021, and he has run the January camp with an eye to the future despite his lack of certainty around his own role. 

With a roster filled with relatively inexperienced prospects and just five players from the World Cup, he gave US debuts to eight players in Wednesday’s defeat.

‘Anthony has done a great job at this camp,’ defender Walker Zimmerman said. 

‘The staff are continuing a process, so it allows us ease in understanding those principles, but he’s been phenomenal. It´s not an easy job for him, but he’s doing an amazing job so far in this camp.’

Jesus Ferreira gets ready to get down to work on the training field ahead of Saturday’s game

The January camp concludes with a potentially lively exhibition: The LA Galaxy´s home stadium is likely to be sold out to see the Americans against a Colombian team featuring Los Angeles FC star Chicho Arango on Saturday.

Despite the small window with his players, Hudson feels good about both the ideas and the camaraderie that have been fostered. Hudson has stuck with Berhalter’s philosophical ideas about attacking play, ball possession and defense.

‘Going forward, we have a very clear game idea,’ Hudson said. 

‘Whoever is in this seat and has this type of game idea, naturally you want to keep evolving and moving it forward, so that’s the plan for us. In March, we have maybe three days on the training field going into the first game, so it’s really tough to make wholesale changes anyway. That´s the way we´re looking at it.’

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