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Sounders bringing back assistant coaches

Top assistants Tom Dutra, Gonzalo Pineda, Preki, Djimi Traore and Adam Owen will all return.

Photo courtesy of Sounders FC

Brian Schmetzer will be bringing back one of the most accomplished coaching staffs in MLS, the Seattle Sounders finally announced on Tuesday. In Tom Dutra, Gonzalo Pineda, Preki, Djimi Traore and Adam Owen, Schmetzer has a staff that has World Cup, Champions League, English Premier League and tons of MLS experience.

“I’m very pleased to retain a coaching staff that has helped this club to a tremendous amount of success,” Sounders General Manager & President of Soccer Garth Lagerwey said in a team statement. “Our coaches come from all over the world and each bring something very unique to our team. I look forward to their continued efforts as we head into another campaign.”

Of that group, Dutra has been around the longest. In addition to being the only holdover from Sigi Schmid’s original staff, Dutra was first hired by Schmetzer in 2006 when the Sounders were still in the USL. The Lacey native has coached such goalkeeping icons as Kasey Keller, Marcus Hahnemann and Michael Gspurning and helped revive the career of Stefan Frei.

Pineda and Traore previously played for the Sounders before joining the coaching staff. Pineda, a former Mexican World Cup player, joined Schmetzer’s staff in 2017. Traore, who was a Champions League winner with Liverpool, first joined the Sounders in 2015 as an S2 assistant and moved to the first team staff a year later. Both have been linked to various head coach openings.

Not only is Preki the only person to win both MLS Coach of the Year and MVP, but he’s still the only two-time MVP in league history. He’s also won a USL title with the Sacramento Republic in 2015. He joined Schmetzer’s staff in 2018.

Owen is the newest member, having joined the Sounders in the dual role of High Performance Director and Technical Advisor in 2020. Among his prior stops as a coach are the Wales national team and Scottish giants Glasgow Rangers.

“My coaching staff is talented, diverse and brings a wealth of knowledge to the club,” Schmetzer said in a statement. “Their standards align with the club and are forged by their experiences as successful players and coaches in the modern game. They are true professionals, dedicated to improving First Team performance and helping the young players achieve success.”

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