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Chivas USA's Jesse Marsch expected to join U.S. coaching staff

February 2, 2010 |  8:44 pm

I stopped by on Tuesday to watch Chivas USA play the Ventura County Fusion in a scrimmage at the Home Depot Center and to talk to new Chivas USA Coach Martin Vasquez.

Turns out to have been a worthwhile trip, if only for the unexpected news -- or at least hot rumor -- learned.

The game itself was interesting  because Vasquez used the occasion to look at 22 players, 11 in each half, during a 2-0 victory on goals by Maicon Santos and Artur Aghasyan.

Of more interest was the brief appearance by Jesse Marsch as a spectator.

Marsch is one of only four original players remaining from Major League Soccer's inaugural season in 1996, but is widely expected to hang up his boots before the 2010 season begins.

In fact, he might well do so in the coming days. The word going around the HDC on Tuesday was that Marsch is likely to be added to the U.S. national team staff as an assistant to Coach Bob Bradley.

Marsch, 36, played for Bradley at Princeton, then again when Bradley was coach of the Chicago Fire and later still when Bradley became coach of Chivas USA.

Marsch had been mentioned as a candidate for the Fire job when it became vacant, but that position went to Carlos de los Cobos. An assistant coaching position with the national team -- not to mention a trip to the World Cup in South Africa -- would be a perfect fit for Marsch and would position him well for a future MLS head coaching spot.

That course already has been charted by another of Bradley's former players, Peter Nowak, who played at the Fire, went on to become assistant national team coach (and 2008 U.S. Olympic team coach) and is now coach of the newest MLS team, the Philadelphia Union.

Marsch could do worse than follow a similar trajectory.

-- Grahame L. Jones