Crew Name Longtime Pro Berhalter Head Coach
Updated: Wednesday, November 13 2013, 06:02 PM EST
COLUMBUS (Ken Hines) -- The Columbus Crew have hired longtime professional player Gregg Berhalter as the team's next head coach.
Berhalter joins the Crew after a successful stint as the head coach of Sweden's Hammarby IF. His hiring for that position marked the second time an American was named manager of a European professional club.
Berhalter, who was also named the Crew's Sporting Director, played 18 professional seasons, including a three year run with MLS's L.A. Galaxy, as well as tenures with clubs in England, Germany and the Netherlands.
The 40-year-old also played for the U.S. Men's National Team, helping the squad reach the 2002 FIFA World Cup quarterfinal round.
"At the completion of a very thorough, far-reaching and diverse candidate search, Gregg Berhalter emerged as the clear choice for the Columbus Crew," Crew President Mark McCullers said.
Berhalter compiled a record of 18-11-16 in two seasons with Hammarby. He is now tasked with turning around a team that finished the 2013 season with a record of 12-17-5 under fired head coach Robert Warzycha and his interim replacement, Brian Bliss.
"I am excited about the opportunity to join one of Major League Soccer's original clubs. The Crew has a strong history of winning and a dedicated fan base, and I aim to bring a style of play that resonates with our supporters and results that will make the city proud,"
Berhalter is the Crew's seventh head coach since the team was founded in 1996.