U.S. Soccer wasn't taking any chances of losing Jurgen Klinsmann to another country or club.
The federation broke with tradition and gave its coach a four-year extension before the World Cup in part because it feared other teams would pursue him after the tournament in Brazil next summer, USSF president Sunil Gulati said Friday.
There was speculation linking Klinsmann to Switzerland and Tottenham Hotspur, his former club team.
"We've obviously read some of those things," Gulati acknowledged on a conference call. "At a specific level, none of those things are critical to us. But, certainly, the desire we have a long-term commitment to him and he has a long-term commitment to us was part of it, and market dynamics dictate some of that.
"The program has done well and ... that would bring a lot of interest from the outside," Gulati added. "So sure, some of that matters."
U.S. Soccer waited until after the World Cup to give extensions to Bruce Arena and Bob Bradley. But Gulati said he saw no reason to wait after seeing not only the success Klinsmann had in his first2 ½ years, but the direction of the program.
The U.S. is 27-10-7 since Klinsmann replaced Bob Bradley as national team coach in July 2011. It qualified for its seventh straight World Cup and won this year's CONCACAF Gold Cup, the championship of North and Central America and the Caribbean. The Americans also set team records this year for wins (16), winning percentage (.761) and winning streak (12).
The first victory in the streak was against Germany — albeit its second-string team — and the last was a come-from-behind 4-3 victory in Bosnia-Herzegovina that Gulati pointed to as a sign of progress.
"We've seen players with more confidence, and I think that's a great measure in the confidence that Jurgen has instilled. That we can better than where we've been," Gulati said. "We're building on a foundation. But the expectations and, frankly, the demands are even higher now, and I think our players have responded to that."
Klinsmann also was given the additional title of USSF technical director as part of the deal, putting him in charge of the program's development at all levels. All U.S. coaches have had some input on the lower levels, but this gives Klinsmann the power to institute a singular and consistent approach in coaching and player development throughout the entire program.