The future of the USMNT took another dramatic twist Thursday morning with a press release from U.S. Soccer confirming that sporting director Earnie Stewart — currently overseeing the search for the team's next full-time coach — is leaving his role next month to return to the Netherlands with PSV Eindhoven.
With this closely following the ongoing review of Gregg Berhalter and the departure of Brian McBride as general manager, there are two ways of viewing the current state of the men's program: either it's in shambles or it's a clean slate moving forward.
Shortly after the news surrounding Stewart broke, U.S. Soccer held a videoconference with federation president Cindy Parlow Cone and CEO JT Batson. The two fielded questions from the media for almost 30 minutes and provided a timeline for the USMNT's coaching search.
USMNT coaching search timeline
Who selects the next USMNT manager?
Right now, the most important player in the search for the next head coach is Sportsology Group, a consulting firm hired by U.S. Soccer to provide a full review of the sporting department. This firm, based out of Manchester, England, is going to head the search for the next sporting director.
They're also going to analyze coaching candidates to aid the sporting director, who'll ultimately decide the next USMNT manager. A trip to the Sportsology Group webpage shows they've worked with Inter Miami, LAFC, the Chicago Fire and FC Cincinnati.
"The team at Sportsology has been there for every step of FC Cincinnati's journey," says FCC Co-CEO Jeff Berding in a testimonial. Cincinnati won the Wooden Spoon in each of its first three seasons.
When will the sporting director be hired?
According to Cone, the goal is to have the new sporting director in place before the start of the Women's World Cup on July 20.
When will the new USMNT manager be hired?
After the sporting director is in place, the goal is to have the new manager installed by the end of summer.
Could Berhalter still be manager?
Cone said that "Gregg remains a candidate," but U.S. Soccer is certainly moving away from that selection following the departures of McBride and Stewart.
So Anthony Hudson is the boss now?
Hudson, the interim manager, will now take control of the USMNT for Nations League matches in March, the Nations League finals and the Gold Cup (running from June 24-July 16). That's a pretty remarkable turnaround from being the worst coach in Colorado Rapids history.