Tuesday was a rare occasion in the U.S. Soccer world. Sunil Gulati, the federation's president, sat down for an hour-long on-the-record chat with a group of reporters ahead of the United States men's national team's Copa America match-up with Costa Rica. Gulati only speaks on special occasions to the press, so this was certainly something to take notice of.
Steven Goff of the Washington Post was there and shared some of Gulati's most noteworthy quotes on Twitter. Most of which revolved around the USMNT's recent struggles the past 18 months and Jurgen Klinsmann's joint roles as manager and technical director.
Gulati on #USMNT: "Results of the last 18 months overall haven't been what we would have hoped for, esp in the official competitions"— Steven Goff (@SoccerInsider) June 7, 2016
Gulati on Klinsmann, #USMNT: "We will look at everything after this competition."— Steven Goff (@SoccerInsider) June 7, 2016
Gulati on JK: "There are some things in his role as technical director we think we've made good advances in, but we need to win games"— Steven Goff (@SoccerInsider) June 7, 2016
Obviously the two phrases that stick out in those tweets are "we need to win games" and "we'll look at everything after this competition." Gulati's support for Klinsmann as USMNT manager has remained unwavering. So, what could happen if the Copa America doesn't pan out like they hope? Could Gulati reassess Klinsmann's roles if the USMNT continue their poor form and fail to make the knockout round?
There's also this excerpt from ESPN's Jeff Carlisle that seems to admit that Klinsmann's plan for the long haul might not come to fruition if his short term success doesn't improve. Very candid words from the president who is usually committed to his manager.
Gulati: "The reality is the business we’re in, you don’t get to see through many long term goals if you don’t hit short term goals." #usmnt— Jeff Carlisle (@JeffreyCarlisle) June 7, 2016
Only time will tell what Gulati will actually do once the Copa America is over, but his comments suggest he's not exactly as confident as he once was in Klinsmann.