Argentinian coach Matias Almeyda is no longer in charge of the San Jose Earthquakes. San Jose sits last in the Western Conference on three points after playing seven games but with no win since the start of the campaign. Almeyda was named coach in October 2018.
The coach will be followed through the exit door by close aids Omar Zarif, Carlos Roa, Daniel Vega, Guido Bonini, Fabio Alvarez, and Agustin Zalazar, who had all been part of his staff. Alex Covelo, the coach of Earthquakes II in the MLS NEXT Pro, has been appointed interim boss until a permanent replacement for Almeyda is found. Legendary San Jose forward Chris Wondolowski, who only retired at the end of last season, will help Covelo, as will seven-time MLS All-Star Steve Ralston.
Almeyda spoke about a potential departure in February, ahead of his team’s home opener against New York Red Bulls.
“I live day by day, I can’t avoid that there are people that try to sign us as a coaching staff. I was very clear at the end of last season with both the owner and our GM, and I was very clear with them at the beginning of this season as well,” Almeyda said. “After 10 months, I’m free,” he added.
Parte de nuestra historia.
Gracias Matias por aportar su granito de arena para San Jose. pic.twitter.com/sra9pyWbwZ
— San Jose Earthquakes (@SJEarthquakes) April 18, 2022
The 48-year-old leaves San Jose with a 33-26-44 record. Before joining Earthquakes, Almeyda spent three years at Chivas de Guadalajara, winning five trophies. A former international midfielder during his playing days, Almeyda won 40 caps for Argentina and scored one goal. He represented his country at the 1998 and 2002 World Cups. At the club level, he played for the likes of Inter, Lazio, Parma, and Sevilla.
Almeyda started coaching in 2011 with Argentinian giants River Plate, where he also finished his playing career, then moved to Banfield in the same league.
According to rumors, he might be heading back to Chivas once his contract situation at San Jose is closed.
In 2021, San Jose finished 10th in the Western Conference, outside the playoff spots. This season, the bookies calculated the Quakes’ chances of reaching the playoffs at 9.8%, the second-lowest after Miami FC’s 5.7%.
The moneyline has San Jose at +16000 to lift the MLS Cup at the conclusion of the campaign, the same as Inter Miami. The two franchises are at the bottom of the MLS favorites list. LAFC tops the charts at +500, followed by Philadelphia Union at +850.