L.A. Galaxy retain Schmid as coach
Posted: Wednesday November 26, 2003 6:58PM; Updated: Wednesday November 26, 2003 7:04PM
CARSON, Calif. (AP) -- Sigi Schmid will remain the Los Angeles Galaxy coach despite the Major League Soccer team's struggling through its first losing season and collapsing in the playoffs.
Galaxy vice president and general manager Doug Hamilton said Wednesday that Schmid's status was "highly scrutinized" over the past two weeks.
"We met extensively with Sigi, met with ownership," Hamilton said in a conference call. "We decided that he gives us the best chance of winning."
Hamilton said there were going to be changes within the team, and that Schmid will travel to Central and South America in search of some new players. Schmid is credited with helping to bring Guatemalan Carlos Ruiz, the league's 2002 MVP, to the Galaxy.
After winning the MLS championship last year, Los Angeles went 9-12-9 this season, the team's worst record in the eight-year history of the league.
The Galaxy finished fourth in the five-team Western Conference, then lost to eventual MLS Cup champion San Jose in the opening round after building an aggregate four-goal lead. The two-game series was decided by total goals.
Los Angeles beat the Earthquakes 2-0 in the first game and went up 2-0 early in the second before San Jose scored five unanswered goals.
"I was as disappointed as any fan," Schmid said during the conference call. "It's not something I want to repeat."
Schmid, who signed a new multiyear contract last March, said the team needs to add talent on offense.
"This year there are going to be more significant changes as the team has grown older. This is the year we need to rebuild," he said. "I'm excited to be able to look for another good player like Carlos."
Schmid, 50, has a 70-47-25 record since becoming the Galaxy coach on April 22, 1999. He has guided the team to the MLS Cup three times, losses to D.C. United in 1999 and San Jose in 2001, then the Galaxy's first championship in a 1-0 overtime victory over New England in 2002.