It's a new day in the City Beautiful as Orlando City has announced recent United States Men's National Team assistant coach Jason Kreis as the next boss, taking the place of Adrian Heath. Prior to that, as you may have heard, he was the head coach with Real Salt Lake from 2007-2013 and with New York City FC in 2015, building a wealth of experience managing in Major League Soccer.
Kreis, a former player himself by way of Duke University, had a decorated MLS history with the Dallas Burn and Real Salt Lake, earning himself MVP honors in 1999. He was also a prolific goal scorer, netting 108 over his career, which currently has him sitting in fifth place all time for regular season tallies. His MVP year was also the first season that a player recorded 15 goals and 15 assists in the same season.
He also made his way into the international game on a few occasions, getting 14 caps to his credit and also scoring one goal against Jamaica in a 1999 friendly.
The best way to sum up his playing style was as a tenacious forward/midfielder who knew how to finish when given the chance. Even in his time at Duke University, Kreis was the engine for the team that made the NCAA tournament from 1992-94 and won the 1992 NCAA College Cup as well as the 1994 ACC Championship.
When he retired in 2007, Kreis immediately took over the head coaching job with Real Salt Lake and had quite a bit of success in his tenure. His teams made the playoffs every year from 2008 on, and even made it to two MLS Cup finals -- the first, which Real Salt Lake won in 2009 (making him the youngest head coach to ever win the cup), and the second against Sporting Kansas City in a thrilling game that was decided on penalty kicks in 2013. Even though Sporting KC won, that was one of those games everyone remembers.
After spending a year abroad in England in 2014 to get to know the City Football Group ownership, his first year as coach with NYCFC wasn't the success the club looked for. Kreis' team finished eighth in the Eastern Conference in 2015 and he was let go in November.
Kreis is known for his obsession with the game and, combined with his past success, could very well be the voice the Lions' locker room needs. Having had success as both a player and a coach, Kreis knows how to win and knows what it takes to get the MLS Cup.
Look for more news and views in the coming hours and days on The Mane Land about the new boss, Jason Kreis.