Garber Takes Klinsy to the Woodshed

MLS Commissioner Don Garber, obviously having had his fill of Juergen Klinsmann being quoted this week as bashing his league and some of the players who have chosen to sign here, called a more or less impromptu teleconference this afternoon and proceeded to lay a big old whooping stick on the USMNT's ego-besotted head coach.

Garber started out by saying “Obviously, this is not a call that I want to have made, and it’s certainly not something I look forward to discussing."

He then proceeded to act like he was enjoying the hell out of the thing. Make no mistake, the man is clearly mad as hell.


Calling the MLS/USSF relationship "probably the most successful partnership between any league and any federation in the world of football", he continued:

“I will do anything and everything to defend our league, our players and our owners.

"I don’t believe anyone is above the sport and I believe everyone needs to be accountable for their behavior.

“Juergen’s comments are very, very detrimental to the league. They are detrimental to the sport of soccer in America and everything that we are trying to do north of the border. And not only do I think they are detrimental, they are wrong.

"Saying to any player that signing with MLS is not going to be good for their career or good for their form is detrimental

“In 2014, MLS is going to spend over $30m on player development alone. That investment is going to grow over the next couple of years.

“To think that we are not aligned with our national team coach is disappointing and personally infuriating and frankly I don’t think it is in line with the shared vision that this league has with the federation

“To think that our national team coach is not in alignment with that is frustrating as hell"

Incredibly, he was just getting started, tossing out gems like:

"I believe that Landon should've been in Brazil .... His treatment was inexcusable."


“I would say I’ve got a very good relationship with Juergen, which is why I was so shocked to see him publicly disparage Michael & Clint" and added that his public carping about Bradley playing in MLS is "absolutely unacceptable".

He even added a thinly veiled threat, saying that Klinsmann "needs to think very very hard about how he manages himself publicly".

Let's be clear about something here: Don Garber and Sunil Gulati are joined at the hip, Garber has a hell of a lot of influence over at USSF and there is little to no chance at all that The Don made these remarks without first discussing them with the President of the Fed.

So when Don says "watch your step there, Kraut Boy", Juergen would do well to pay attention.

It will be interesting to see how the arrogant, ego-besotted Klinsmann, who considers himself the bride at every wedding and the corpse at every funeral, responds to this kind of public spanking. The guess here is that he'll take Garber's advice and come out shuffling and jiving about how he was "misunderstood" or some such rubbish.

He probably won't admit that yes, in fact, it was his personal dislike of Landon Donovan that put Chris Wondolowski in front of the goal at the key moment of the World Cup, but that's OK. Everybody already knows it.

And Lord knows no one will expect him to understand that he's not, in fact, Christ come to cleanse the US soccer temple with his particular brand of footballing genius which is beyond the ken of the bunch of mouth breathing stump toothed morons that follow the USMNT, but everybody knows that's what he thinks.

But maybe, just maybe, in between being privately outraged that a mere mortal such as Don Garber had the unmitigated gall to call him on the carpet for his ill-conceived, arrogant and specious remarks, he'll grasp that badmouthing MLS like some low rent BigSoccer Euro snob is not in his or anyone else's best interests.

He may secretly believe that he can scrape up enough Volksdeutsch offspring of random US Servicemen to form a team he can communicate with in his native tongue - Mussolini - but he surely must recognize that without MLS the USMNT might as well be Jamaica in terms of international competitiveness.

Klinsmann can think what he wants. He and his classless, churlish son can sit around behind closed doors and say whatever they like about Major League Soccer and the men who elect to play here. Nobody cares.

But as the head coach of the US National Team, he has to understand that talking down MLS to a domestic and world press that laps it up like mother's milk only helps retard the progress of an entity he needs very badly if he wants to succeed and demonstrate to the world his unique brand of genius and superiority.

And if he wants to keep his job he would do well to keep in mind that Don Garber wields a tremendous amount of power and influence in American soccer and has just given notice that he's not afraid to use it.

Back to you, Klinsy.