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 San Jose Earthquakes

Earthquakes Part Ways with Head Coach Luchi Gonzalez

June 24, 2024 - Major League Soccer (MLS)
San Jose Earthquakes News Release


SAN JOSE, Calif. - The San Jose Earthquakes announced today that the club has parted ways with head coach Luchi Gonzalez. Assistant coach Ian Russell has been named interim head coach, while assistant coaches Steve Ralston, Luciano Fusco and Adin Brown will remain in their current roles.

"We want to thank Luchi for his hard work, commitment to the club and professionalism," said general manager Chris Leitch. "Luchi and his staff have worked extremely hard the past year and a half, but we have not met expectations this year as a club. We felt that we needed to make a change, and it was in the best interests of the club to move in a different direction."

Gonzalez was named head coach of the Quakes on Aug. 17, 2022, and joined the club on a full-time basis following the 2022 FIFA World Cup, where he served as U.S. Men's National Team assistant coach. During the past two seasons, Gonzalez posted a 13-24-16 record. He led San Jose to the Audi MLS Cup Playoffs in 2023, taking Sporting Kansas City to penalty kicks before Sporting prevailed in the shootout.

"I want to thank ownership, leadership and our fans for the opportunity and the support they gave me during my time managing the Earthquakes," said Gonzalez. "I am very grateful to all the staff and players that worked hard every day to improve our situation and wish them the very best moving forward."

Russell, 48, steps into the Quakes' head coaching role after spending the past year and a half as assistant coach. He has been an assistant coach for parts of 11 seasons overall with San Jose and had a stint as interim head coach for two matches in 2014. He helped the Quakes to the Supporters' Shield in 2012 as an assistant coach.

"Ian is a very experienced coach who knows our club better than anyone," said Leitch. "He had a great run as head coach at Reno for four years, winning a lot of games and making the playoffs every season. We're confident that he's ready to lead us, starting with this Saturday's game against LA at Stanford Stadium."

Russell took charge of Reno 1868 FC, the Quakes' affiliate in the United Soccer League (USL) Championship for their inaugural campaign in 2017. During his four years at the helm of Reno, Russell was named the USL Co-Coach of the Year in 2020 and was USL Coach of the Year finalist in both 2017 and 2019. He guided his team to the postseason all four seasons and became the second-fastest coach in USL history to win 60 regular season games. Reno 1868 posted a 62-26-28 record, and his teams scored more goals during his four-year stint than any other club in USL Championship, posting a +97 goal differential.

A Seattle native, Russell made 131 appearances for the Quakes as a player between 2000-05. The former midfielder helped the Earthquakes win MLS Cup championships in 2001 and 2003, as well as their first Supporters' Shield in 2005. Russell was recently honored as one of the 50 Greatest Quakes in club history ahead of next Saturday's 50th Anniversary Game against the LA Galaxy.

Transaction: San Jose Earthquakes (MLS) - Earthquakes part ways with head coach Luchi Gonzalez and name Ian Russell interim head coach


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