Seattle Sounders FC coach Sigi Schmid and former Sounders and U.S. national team goalkeeper Kasey Keller have been elected into the National Soccer Hall of Fame.
U.S. Soccer announced Wednesday that Schmid and Keller will be inducted along with the late Glenn Myernick, a former national team player and coach. Information on the induction ceremony will be announced later.
“It’s pretty overwhelming because it’s a culmination of what you’ve done over a long period of time,” Schmid said. “… It’s nothing that I ever went into the sport to try and achieve. It’s just something that’s happened, and it’s a reflection that I’ve been able to coach a lot of good players.”
One of those players was Keller, who capped his playing career as a Sounder under Schmid from 2009-11.
“It’s a great honor,” Keller told U.S. Soccer. “You look at some of the guys that have been elected before: It’s not an easy process. … I’m proud and thankful for the people that helped get me to that point throughout my career: teammates, coaches, friends, family. It’s kind of a culmination of what you’ve done and how you got there and all the people that helped you get to that point.”
Keller is an Olympia native who attended the University of Portland. He went on to become one of the most successful goalkeepers in United States team history, playing 102 national team games from 1990-2007 and participating in the 1990, 1998, 2002 and 2006 World Cups.
He was chosen as an MLS All-Star all three seasons with the Sounders and was named to the MLS Best XI and goalkeeper of the year in his final season. He is the franchise leader in wins, saves and shutouts, and now works as part of the club’s broadcast team.
“I’ve never been around a player or goalkeeper who’s been as mentally as strong as him,” Sounders goalkeeper coach Tom Dutra said. “It was unbelievable, his mentality. He could give up a goal and you wouldn’t know it. He’d go a six-, seven-game stretch where he was fantastic, and then he’d give up a bad goal here or there, and he would come back again like there was no tomorrow.”
Schmid is the winningest coach in Major League Soccer history and a two-time MLS coach of the year. He has won MLS Cups with Los Angeles (2002) and Columbus (2008). He has led the Sounders to four U.S. Open Cups and the 2014 Supporters’ Shield.
He has served as head coach of the U.S. under-20 men’s national team and as an assistant for the 1994 FIFA World Cup team.
“I think the most important thing that sticks out for me is just over the years the amount of players that I’ve coached and the friendships that I’ve had,” Schmid said. “… The wins and the accomplishments and the awards, all those things are nice, but … the meat and potatoes are the relationships and the memories you have.”
The Kitsap Pumas (PDL) will meet FC Tacoma 253 (NPSL) in the first round of the U.S. Open Cup on May 13 at Mount Tahoma Stadium. The winner will advance to a second-round match against Seattle Sounders 2 (USL) May 20 at Starfire Stadium in Tukwila. MLS teams, including Sounders FC, will join the tournament in the fourth round, June 16-17. … The Sounders are off Thursday. They will return to training Friday for their Sunday match at Los Angeles.