Midfielder Jermaine Jones, who joined the New England Revolution earlier this week, said U.S. men's national team coach Jurgen Klinsmann encouraged him to join MLS.
“Before the World Cup, I was thinking about [making] that move to the States and MLS,” Jones said. “I talked with national team coach Jurgen Klinsmann a lot about that stuff, and I will say he was one who pushed me to make that step, come back and play here for MLS team.”
Jones, who has played with U.S. since switching allegiances from Germany in 2009, was introduced with New England Tuesday after the club won a "blind draw" to acquire him.
In the past, Klinsmann has suggested that the quality of play in MLS is inferior to that of other leagues.
“He came back, and he was playing in M.L.S., and people say, ‘Oh, he’s playing well,’ but what does that really mean?” Klinsmann said of Landon Donovan in a New York Times story published in June. “This is where M.L.S. hurts him. He was playing at 70 percent, 80 percent, and he was still dominant. That doesn’t help anyone.”
Jones, 32, scored a goal and recorded one assist in four games with the U.S. at this summer's world cup in Brazil.
Before joining New England, Jones played seven years with German club Schalke 04 and also had stints with English club Blackburn Rovers and Turkish club Besitkas.
- Chris Johnson