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Sunday At All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club London Surface: Grass LONDON (AP) _ Results Sunday from the Championships at All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club (seedings in parentheses): Women’s Singles Fourth Round
Marie Bouzkova, Czech Republic, def. Caroline Garcia, France, 7-5, 6-2.
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San Jose Earthquakes | Luchi Gonzalez comes full circle as San Jose Earthquakes new head coach
SAN JOSE — When Luchi Gonzalez came down to the lobby of the Signia by Hilton San Jose, where he was about to about to be introduced as the next coach of the San Jose Earthquakes on Wednesday, he noticed a group of people in the lobby wearing t-shirts with the word “Win.”
At first, he thought they were there to send a message. He soon found out they were attending an unrelated conference, but the message was fitting nonetheless.
“The ambition is to make the playoffs next year, plain and simple,” Gonzalez said. “We must make the playoffs next year. That’s going to be our mentality, our objective.”
Gonzalez, an assistant with the U.S. Men’s National Team since December, will stay with the U.S. team through the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar and then join the Quakes. When the 42-year-old takes over in San Jose for the 2023 season, he will lead a club with two playoff appearances and no playoff wins since 2012.
This year’s team is currently 5-11-9 and in 13th place out of 14 teams in the Western Conference, nine points from the playoff line. But Gonzalez said the franchise isn’t as bad as the record may indicate.
“The perception of where the club is today, it’s maybe worse than what it is,” Gonzalez said. “I think there’s a lot of potential. The academy is growing, you have young players doing well, you have guys who are very dangerous offensively. You have a good core. Can we refine it, can we grow it? Absolutely. But I think we have a good starting point and it’s going to be my job to prove that.”
Wednesday’s announcement was a full-circle moment for the Miami native, who was selected by the Quakes sixth overall in the 2002 MLS SuperDraft and appeared in eight games. After brief stints with the Colorado Rapids and teams in Sweden and Peru, Gonzalez took over as FC Dallas’s academy team in 2012 and was named head coach of the first team in 2019.
Gonzalez led FC Dallas to playoff appearances in his first two seasons in charge, but the team struggled in 2021 and he was fired in September.
Gonzalez’s success developing players at FC Dallas over the last decade is a good fit for San Jose’s young roster. But Quakes general manager Chris Leitch said that the club’s objective was to win, and not just to find a coach who can help players improve.
Leitch said that Gonzalez’s deep knowledge of MLS will be a competitive advantage, and that the team is expected to play a fast-paced, ball-dominant style while still focusing on defense. The Quakes have allowed 53 goals this season, four more than any other team in MLS.
“If I’m sitting here after four years and we haven’t won an MLS Cup or a Supporters Shield (for having the best regular-season record) I’m going to be really disappointed,” Gonzalez said. “That’s the level of ambition we want for ourselves, for our club, and for our fans.”
Gonzalez also said he received assurances that the Quakes are willing to put in additional resources in order to make that goal a reality. As part of the hiring process, Gonzalez and ownership looked at what the top teams in MLS are spending.
“What I can say is the club is ready to invest more than it ever has,” Gonzalez said. “The club is ready to put together a staff with more support than it ever has. That was important to me even before my personal situation. You’ll get more details soon, but that’s something that I’m sure will be more clear in the coming months.”
Interim coach Alex Covelo and his staff will lead the team for the rest of the 2022 season. The Quakes are 5-7-6 under Covelo, who took over after coach Matias Almeyda was fired early in his fourth season after starting 0-4-3.