Sigi Schmid – Head Coach
Sigi Schmid was named head coach of the LA Galaxy on July 27, 2017. Schmid is the winningest-coach in MLS history with 254 wins across MLS Regular and Post Season play. Throughout his career, he has captured two MLS Cups (2002, 2008), a record five U.S. Open Cups (2001, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2014), three MLS Supporters’ Shields (2002, 2008, 2014) and coached one of just two teams ever to capture a CONCACAF Champions Cup (2000). Additionally, he reached the MLS Cup Playoffs in 13 seasons, while recording 28 MLS Cup Playoff wins, the second most in MLS history. Schmid is one of two coaches in MLS history to guide two different teams to MLS Cup titles and he is one of three to coach in four total MLS Cup Finals.
Throughout his professional coaching career, which began in 1999 as the LA Galaxy Head Coach, Schmid has spent time with the Galaxy (1999-2004), Columbus Crew SC (2006-2008) and Seattle Sounders FC (2009-2016). During his time in MLS, Schmid has compiled a 228-165-113 record during the MLS Regular Season.
Schmid’s coaching career began in 1980 when he became head coach of the UCLA Men’s Soccer Program after serving as an assistant in previous years. He remained with UCLA, his alma mater, for nearly 20 years, leading the team to a 322-63-33 record, 16-consecutive playoff appearances and three NCAA championships (1985, 1990, 1997) while becoming one of the most successful soccer college coaches of all time. Following the 1997 season, Schmid was named NCAA Coach of the Year.
His time with UCLA led him to his first professional coaching job when he took over the LA Galaxy in 1999. In his first season with the club, he led the team to a 17-9-0 record and was voted the MLS Coach of the Year. From 1999-2004, Schmid led the LA Galaxy to four major trophies: the 2002 MLS Cup and Supporters’ Shield, the 2001 U.S. Open Cup and the 2000 CONCACAF Champions’ Cup. Altogether, his Galaxy teams recorded a 79-53-32 record and reached the MLS Cup final four times, winning three division crowns.
He coached Columbus Crew SC from 2006-2008, leading the team to their first ever MLS Cup title in 2008, before joining Seattle Sounders FC in 2009. As head coach of Seattle, Schmid led the team to four U.S. Open Cup titles, an MLS Supporters’ Shield and seven-straight appearances in the MLS Cup Playoffs.
Internationally, he has twice served as the U.S. U-20 National Team head coach, most recently in 2005 at the FIFA World Championships. Schmid also served as an assistant to Bora Milutinovic on the USMNT 1994 FIFA World Cup team in addition to serving as head coach for the 1991 World University Games and 1995 Pan American Games.
Pete Vagenas – Vice President of Soccer Operations
The two-time MLS Cup winning midfielder serves as the Vice President of Soccer Operations.
Vagenas previously played for the Galaxy during nine of his 13 years in Major League Soccer and was a part of the Galaxy’s 2002 and 2005 MLS Cup championships. He was named Vice President of Soccer Operations in January 2016 after serving as Director of the LA Galaxy Academy since 2013. During his time as LA Galaxy Academy Director, Vagenas helped establish the Galaxy’s Academy into one of the most successful in North America with 15 Academy Products currently signed to professional contracts across LA Galaxy and Galaxy II. In 2015, Vagenas oversaw the development of the LA Galaxy Academy Blended Learning Program, a first-of-its-kind program that provides a full high-school education at StubHub Center for student-athletes immersed in the same professional environment as LA Galaxy and LA Galaxy II.
While Vagenas served as Vice President of Soccer Operations in 2016, the LA Galaxy launched LA Galaxy Girls’ U-14/15, U-16/17 and U-18/19 Academy teams that now compete in the U.S. Soccer Girls’ Development Academy League, becoming the first and only Girls’ Academy program to be fully-funded by a Major League Soccer side, allowing talented local athletes to join free of charge.
Vagenas, a product of Pasadena, California, was originally selected by the Galaxy in the second round of 2000 MLS SuperDraft with the 23rd overall selection. The St. Francis High (La Cañada Flintridge, California) and UCLA product made his professional debut on May 24, 2000, against the New England Revolution, scoring on his debut in stoppage time of a 2-1 loss. He was named club captain ahead of the start of the 2005 season and led the Galaxy to MLS Cup and U.S. Open Cup victories.
The former midfielder started in 164 of the 183 regular season games that he appeared for the Galaxy, scoring 14 goals and adding 25 assists during his career in LA. He also scored two goals and notched two assists in 19 postseason games, reaching the MLS Cup Playoffs eight times in his 13 years as a player, including in each of his first six seasons as a pro.
Throughout his 13-year career in Major League Soccer, Vagenas represented Seattle Sounders FC, Vancouver Whitecaps and Chivas USA in addition to the Galaxy. He appeared in more than 250 combined regular season and postseason games while winning two MLS Cup titles (2002, 2005), four Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup titles (2001, 2005 with LA; 2009, 2010 with Seattle) in addition to the 2002 Supporters’ Shield and 2000 CONCACAF Champions Cup with LA.
In addition to his club career, Vagenas, who holds a U.S. Soccer Federation “A” coaching license, represented the U.S. at the 1999 Pan American Games, the 2000 Sydney Olympics and also made two appearances with the U.S. National Team. At the Olympics, he finished with a team-high three goals as he helped lead the U.S. to a fourth place finish, the best finish by a U.S. team in Olympic history. Shortly after returning from the Olympics, he made his full international debut, coming on as a second half substitute in a 2-0 win over Mexico at the L.A. Memorial Coliseum on October 25, 2000.
Jovan Kirovski - Technical Director
Jovan Kirovski, who retired following the 2011 season and served as an assistant coach for the Galaxy during the 2012 campaign, is the first Technical Director in the club’s history. Under the direction of Galaxy General Manager and Head Coach Bruce Arena, Kirovski, who spent the first 12 years of his professional career playing in Europe, scouts and evaluates players locally and abroad while also helping establish relationships with clubs around the world. Additionally, Kirovski helps implement a core curriculum throughout the Galaxy Academy while evaluating the Academy’s coaches and players and helping to recruit the top local talent to join the club.
A native of Escondido, Calif., Kirovski began his professional soccer career in 1992 when he joined the youth ranks at Manchester United alongside players like David Beckham, Gary Neville and Paul Scholes. After four years with United, Kirovski moved to Germany, signing with Borussia Dortmund, where he became the first American to win the UEFA Champions League in May 1997. Seven months later, Kirovski became the first American to score a goal in the competition, doing so against Sparta Prague in December 1997 as Dortmund went on to reach the semifinals of the 1997-98 Champions League. He spent the 1998-99 season on loan with fellow German side FC Koln before heading to Portugal a year later when he signed with Sporting Lisbon. After one season in Portugal, Kirovski moved to England, spending one season in the Championship with Crystal Palace before moving on to the Premier League, signing with Birmingham City. He scored twice in 23 league matches for the Blues during the 2002/03 and 2003/04 seasons, helping them retain their Premier League status.
After more than a decade in Europe, Kirovski first arrived in MLS in February 2004, signing with the Galaxy. An All-Star in his first year with the club when he scored an MLS-career-high eight goals, Kirovski spent the first year and a half of his time in MLS with the Galaxy, tallying 12 goals and six assists in 48 games. He was traded to Colorado in September 2005 and helped the Rapids reach back-to-back Western Conference Championships in 2005 and 2006 before finishing as the club’s top scorer in 2007. After 12 goals in 61 games for the Rapids, as well as the first postseason goal of his career, Kirovski was traded to San Jose in midway through the 2008 season before he returned to the Galaxy in November 2008. Back with his first MLS club, Kirovski became a key veteran contributor to the club’s renaissance, playing in central midfield and occasionally up front. He played in 56 games over the last three seasons as well as five postseason matches in that time, scoring six goals and adding three assists as the Galaxy reestablished themselves as the premier club in Major League Soccer. He finished his MLS career with 30 goals and 13 assists in 174 regular season games while helping his teams win a pair of Supporters’ Shields and MLS Cup 2011 in the final two years of his playing career.
In addition to his club career, Kirovski, who holds his U.S. Soccer Federation’s “A” coaching license, made 62 appearances with the U.S. National Team, scoring nine times for his country during an 11-year international career. He made his National Team debut in October 1994 and scored his first goal a month later in a 3-0 win over Jamaica. He helped the U.S. qualify for the World Cup in 1998, 2002 and 2006 while also appearing in the 1995 Copa America, the 1996 and 2000 CONCACAF Gold Cups as well as the 1999 and 2003 FIFA Confederations Cups. Kirovski collected his final cap in a U.S. uniform in April 2004, coming on as a second half substitute in a 1-0 win over Mexico in Dallas.
Kurt Schmid - Director of Player Personnel and Scouting
The LA Galaxy have added Kurt Schmid to the technical staff as the team’s Director of Player Personnel and Scouting, the club announced today. Kurt joins the Galaxy from Seattle Sounders FC, where he served on staff since 2009 as an Assistant Coach, Head Scout and Director of Player Personnel.
Schmid was brought in by the club following the 2017 season. In his role with the LA Galaxy, Kurt Schmid will work directly in all soccer-related aspects of the LA Galaxy and LA Galaxy II, specifically in scouting and identifying talent at the collegiate, national and international level. In addition to scouting and identifying talent, he will work closely with the Galaxy technical staff in areas regarding player evaluation, interacting with agents and facilitating MLS communication and CBA compliance.
Schmid joined Seattle Sounders FC in 2009 as an assistant coach and scout, a position he would serve in for seven seasons. During that time, he helped the Sounders to four U.S. Open Cups (2009, 2010, 2011, 2014) and one Supporters’ Shield (2014) before being named Head Scout in 2016. Immediately following Seattle’s 2016 MLS Cup win, he was promoted to Director of Player Personnel. In Seattle, Schmid was part of a technical staff that qualified for MLS Cup Playoffs in each season of his tenure.
Prior to his time in Seattle, he worked at Saint Mary’s College as an Assistant Coach before assuming the same position at UC Irvine in 2007-08. While with UC Irvine, Schmid was a part of a staff that won Big West Conference championships during both the regular season and tournament in addition to earning an NCAA tournament berth, marking UC Irvine’s first time achieving those feats.
He was a member of the Region IV ODP boys’ coaching staff for two years and also coached at West Coast FC. Previously, he was a coach for South Bay Soccer Club and began his coaching career at South High School in Torrance, California.
Schmid played soccer at Wake Forest and UCLA, representing the Bruins’ 2002 side that earned an NCAA Championship. He graduated from UCLA with a degree in Business-Economics.
Dominic Kinnear – Assistant Coach
Named to Sigi Schmid's coaching staff on Aug. 29, 2017, Kinnear has won two MLS Cups and recorded 166 wins, the third most in the league’s history.
Kinnear’s 166 wins in MLS rank only behind Schmid (228 wins) and current USMNT and former Galaxy Head Coach Bruce Arena (202). The former U.S. international is one of just four coaches in MLS history to have captured multiple MLS Cups as head coach, and one of just two to win in consecutive seasons. In 2006 and 2007, he led the Houston Dynamo to MLS Cup titles. Additionally, he served as an assistant coach for the San Jose Earthquakes’ MLS Cup victories in 2001 and 2003. He ranks third all-time in MLS Cup Playoff wins with 15 and reached the post-season in nine of his 13 seasons as a head coach.
Before his time as a coach, Kinnear played professional soccer across a 12-year career. His career began playing for the San Francisco Bay Blackhawks, San Jose Hawks and the Fort Lauderdale Strikers before signing with Necaxa of the Mexican First Division, leading them to the Mexican Cup in 1995. Following that, he signed with the APSL’s Seattle Sounders and was again a part of a championship-winning team. Kinnear was a member of the Colorado Rapids during Major League Soccer’s debut season in 1996, making 14 appearances. He was traded to the San Jose Clash the following season, making 28 appearances and scoring twice. He finished his playing career by spending three seasons with the Tampa Bay Mutiny (1998-2000), serving as team captain in 1999.
Internationally, he recorded 54 caps, nine goals and two assists for the U.S. national team. In 1993, he led the team in scoring with seven goals and one assist. On May 17, 1992, in Denver, Colorado. Kinnear captained the USMNT for their match against his native Scotland.
Oka Nikolov – Assistant Coach
Sigi Schmid named Oka Nikolov assistant coach on Nov. 8. Nikolov joins the Galaxy from Philadelphia Union, where he was appointed to the Philadelphia Union technical staff in 2015 to oversee the goalkeeping position. Philadelphia Union goalkeeper Andre Blake, under the tutelage of Nikolov, developed into one of the best goalkeepers in Major League Soccer, earning honors as the 2016 MLS Goalkeeper of the Year and again being nominated for the same award this season. As a player, Nikolov spent 22 years at Eintracht Frankfurt, including 19 seasons with the senior team where he appeared in more 370 Bundesliga games. Nikolov joined the Philadelphia Union in July 2013 before finishing his club career with Fort Lauderdale Strikers, of the North American Soccer League, in 2014. Internationally, Nikolov appeared in five games for Macedonia.
After retiring from play in 2014, Nikolov joined the Eintracht Frankfurt Talent Academy as a coach and also served as the assistant coach for the Macedonian National Team. Before that, Nikolov worked as a goalkeeping coach for the German Under-19 National Team.
Junior Gonzalez – Assistant Coach
Gonzalez joined the Galaxy on Nov. 8, 2017 after serving as the Rio Grande Valley FC Toros Head Coach since the start of the 2017 USL season. Prior to that, he served as an assistant coach of Seattle Sounders FC S2 under Ezra Hendrickson and was previously an assistant coach and served as the director of scouting at Chivas USA from 2013-2014. Gonzalez has also served as the U.S. Boys’ U-15 National Team assistant coach, as well as the head scout for the U.S. U-17 Men’s National Team for the 2015 FIFA U-17 World Cup in Chile. The California native also served as the Sounders’ head academy scout and U-14 head coach.
Gonzalez’ coaching career began in 2001 as an assistant coach for the University of California, Riverside men’s program. Three years later he became the head coach, and under his tenure 30 players were named All-Big West Conference – including two Big West Conference Players of the Year – and six players went on to MLS and USL careers. In 2011, Gonzalez was named the Big West Coach of the Year.
As a player, Gonzalez won the 1997 NCAA National Championship with UCLA. His collegiate career included four trips to the NCAA tournament and three Mountain Pacific Conference Championships. Gonzalez continued his playing career with the USL’s San Diego Flash, and his career continued throughout California before his final stop with the Utah Blitz.
Rob Becerra – Assistant Coach
Officially named to Curt Onalfo’s coaching staff on Jan. 10, 2017, Becerra is set to begin his fourth season in the Galaxy organization. Becerra joined the LA Galaxy II coaching staff during the team’s inaugural 2014 season and remained on staff for three years, helping the club reach the playoffs in each season while winning the 2015 USL Western Conference Championship.
Prior to his time with Los Dos, Becerra coached at Stanford University from 2006-2013 that followed a head coaching stint at Redlands University, where he led the Bulldogs to the their most successful run in school history. As Head Coach of Redlands, Becerra compiled a 126-28-8 record while earning their first NCAA playoff appearances, NCAA Division III Final and five-consecutive Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Program titles while earning 2001 All-Far West Region Coach of the Year.
Muñoz was named the second LA Galaxy II coach in history after former manager Curt Onalfo was named LA Galaxy Head Coach. Muñoz takes over after spending time as a coach and the Director of the LA Galaxy Academy, which he helped develop into one of the most successful in Major League Soccer, with 14 Academy products signed across LA Galaxy and LA Galaxy II before he was named head coach.
The former LA Galaxy midfielder had previously been a part of the LA Galaxy Academy coaching staff since 2013, coaching both the LA Galaxy U-14’s and U-16’s during that time while later taking over as the club’s Academy Director. Muñoz had also spent time as coach for the Real Salt Lake-Arizona Academy U-16’s, Chivas USA Academy U-16’s and on the U.S. U-14 and U-15 National Team staff since retiring from his playing career in 2009. For the 2010-11 season, he was named the U.S. Development Academy U-16 Coach of the Year.
Prior to his coaching career, Muñoz played professionally in Major League Soccer. Muñoz was selected by Chivas USA in the third round of the 2005 MLS Supplemental Draft and played two seasons for the club, making his professional debut on Aug. 13, 2005 at RFK Stadium against D.C. United. Muñoz played for the California Victory of the USL-1 in 2007 and returned to MLS when he signed with the Galaxy on Aug. 1, 2008. He made his first team debut with the Galaxy on September 6, coming on as a second half substitute against Real Salt Lake, while also appearing in 10 Reserve League games.
A native of Bellflower, Calif., Muñoz graduated from Los Alamitos High School before earning a scholarship to the University of California, Berkeley, where he earned All-Pac-10 Second Team honors as a freshman and All-Pac-10 First Team honors during both his sophomore and junior season.
Since his time on staff with the LA Galaxy Academy, Muñoz has assisted in the development of various LA Galaxy and LA Galaxy II Homegrown Players, including Bradford Jamieson IV, Raul Mendiola, Jaime Villarreal, Eric Lopez, Hugo Arellano, Nathan Smith, Adrian Vera, Ethan Zubak and Adonis Amaya.
Laurent Courtois - LA Galaxy II Assistant Coach
Courtois joins LA Galaxy II as an Assistant Coach after featuring for Los Dos as a player/coach in the team’s inaugural 2014 season. He spent 2011-2013 with Chivas USA before signing on with Galaxy in July 2013. From Lyon, France, Courtois has a playing career that stretches back to 1998. The midfielder spent time in his native France playing for AC Ajaccio, Toulouse, Istres and Grenoble after beginning his career with his hometown club, Lyon. He also spent time in England with West Ham United and in Spain with Levante.
Claine Plummer - LA Galaxy II Goalkeeper Coach
Plummer joins LA Galaxy II to add to a career of coaching stints Chivas USA, Cal State LA, UCLA, Jamaican National Team and Real Salt Lake Academy. Plummer helped lead Jamaica to its CONCACAF Gold Cup Final appearance in 2015. As a player, Plummer was a member of A.D. Limonese in the Costa Rican First Division after four years as a starting goalkeeper for Cal State LA. As a youth player, he featured for Costa Rica at the U-19 and U-23 levels.
Ivan Pierra - Director of Sports Science
After working with the Galaxy for over 10 years from 1996-2008, Pierra, the first trainer in Galaxy history, returned to the club as the Sports Science Department Director in September of 2014 after working for U.S. Soccer Federation. The veteran sports science professional is one of only two athletic trainers in Galaxy history, replacing Armando Rivas who accepted a position with the Chicago Bulls of the NBA.
In the Galaxy’s inaugural season in 1996, Pierra began his initial stint with the Galaxy, where he worked as the athletic trainer for over 10 years before accepting a full-time position as Head Athletic Trainer for the U.S. Men’s National Team in 2008. Prior to then, he had freelanced on the U.S. Soccer Federation staff, including time working with then head coach Bruce Arena. In all, Pierra has worked in four FIFA World Cup tournaments (1994, 1998, 2010, 2014) with the U.S. Soccer Federation, serving as the Head Athletic Trainer in 2010 and 2014 under head coaches Bob Bradley and Jurgen Klinsmann.
Pierra began his professional career in in 1993 after he started working as an athletic trainer for the soccer team Los Angeles Salsa in the American Professional Soccer League. He attended Cal State-Fullerton University from 1990-1993, where he earned a degree in physical education before receiving his Masters of Science in kinesiology in 1999.
Using sports science and medicine programs, Pierra is responsible for monitoring all aspects of player health and fitness for the LA Galaxy, LA Galaxy II and LA Galaxy Academy.
Kurt Andrews - Assistant Athletic Trainer
A native of Rochester, Mich., Kurt Andrews is in his fourth season as the Galaxy’s Assistant Athletic Trainer. An athletic training intern for the Galaxy in 2010, Andrews was hired permanently by the club in January 2012. His primary role is to assist the club’s head athletic trainer with all of the club’s first team training and health related matters.
After graduating from Stony Creek High School in 2003, Andrews attended Oakland University in Michigan, where he majored in Exercise Science and worked with the men’s soccer and women’s volleyball teams before graduating in 2008. He then went on to the University of Arkansas, where he earned his Master’s Degree in Athletic Training. During his time in Fayetteville, Andrews worked with the Razorbacks football, women’s soccer, women’s basketball, men’s and women’s track and field teams as an athletic training student. That opportunity allowed him to work with some of the nation’s top track stars and a number of current and future NFL stars.
Andrews received his certification in both Functional Movement Screening and Selective Functional Movement Assessment in 2011 while at Arkansas. He uses these to assist and help implement rehabilitative exercises to better develop the players in there movement process to avoid possible injuries that can accrue during the season. He went on two receive his Functional Movement Screening Level 2 certification, enhancing his perspective on improving fundamental movement patterns.
Andrews is also a certified Performance Enhancement Specialist (PES), and Corrective Exercise Specialist (CES) through the National Academy of Sports Medicine.
Dan Jones – Strength and Conditioning Coach
Shunta Shimizu - Chiropractor and Scar Tissue Specialist
Shunta Shimizu enters his ninth season with the Galaxy as the club’s Chiropractor and Scar Tissue Specialist. He was invited to be an intern with the Galaxy in the beginning of 2005 season after treating Cobi Jones and Peter Vagenas.
Shimizu specializes with the active release technique, which breaks down scar tissue build up as a result of wear and tear of the body, injury, and post-surgery. His role in Galaxy is to keep athletes on the field and speed up the recovery process after an injury.
A former college soccer player, Shimizu graduated from Loyola Marymount University in 2001 where he majored in Psychology. He then graduated from Southern California University of Health Sciences in 2004 and became a licensed Doctor of Chiropractic in 2005. That same year he went on to become fully certified in Active Release Technique.
Raul Vargas - Equipment Manager
A member of the Galaxy staff since the team’s inaugural season in 1996, Raul Vargas enters his 20th season as the club’s equipment manager. One of the longest tenured employees with the Galaxy and in all of MLS, Vargas was honored in 2008 as the MLS Equipment Manager of the Year. His numerous responsibilities include the ordering and maintaining of game uniforms, practice gear and equipment, making certain these items are ready to go when the players are, wherever in the world the team may be playing.
A native of Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua, Mexico, Vargas is the only member of the team staff to have been a part of all five of the club’s MLS Cup titles, as well as the 2001 and 2005 U.S. Open Cup titles and the 2000 CONCACAF Champions Cup.
In addition to his work with the Galaxy, Vargas has long been involved in the sport of soccer in Southern California. A former goalkeeper, he spent several years playing in various local leagues in Los Angeles County as well as playing for five-time Lincoln League champion Deportivo Obrera and for Cobras of the Olympic Soccer League.
EXOS, formerly Athletes’ Performance, returns for its seventh season as the Official Performance Training Provider to the Galaxy. EXOS is recognized as the industry leader in offering the highest level of integrated performance training and performance physical therapy, as well as the most fully integrated training systems in the world. EXOS systems have helped to power the best of the best in sport: Green Jacket winners, Grand Slam Titles, World Series Winners, Stanley Cup Champions, Super Bowl and NBA Champions, Olympic Gold Medalists, World Cup Medalists and All-Stars from every major sport.
With training facilities at StubHub Center, EXOS is positioned to provide its world-renowned integrated training system to help the Galaxy players achieve their individual peak performance levels. Through the integration of performance training, physical therapy and nutrition, EXOS staff members create customized solutions for each Galaxy player helping to maximize productivity on the field and decrease injury potential.
Santa Monica Orthopaedic Group
The Santa Monica Orthopaedic and Sports Medicine Group provides the official club doctors for the LA Galaxy, with the team of Dr. Bert Mandelbaum and Dr. Byron Patterson leading the group’s efforts with the club. SMOG has grown to be the premier orthopaedic practice in Western Los Angeles, and now consists of 12 physicians all of whom meet the highest standards of education, training and experience. In addition to their physicians, the group has assembled many of the top nurses, technicians and therapists ready to assist patients in any way possible, and their integrated practice includes the following services for better patient care and convenience:
- Digital X-Ray
- Extremity MRI
- Physical Therapy
- Outpatient Surgery Center
- Affiliated with St. John’s Hospital
In addition to providing these services for their patients, SMOG physicians are constantly involved in the development of new techniques and treatments to remain on the cutting edge of orthopaedic medicine. This includes work with the National Institute of Health as well as some of the world’s leading medical technology companies. In addition, SMOG has developed a nationally recognized fellowship program that annually trains 2-3 orthopaedic surgeons from around the country in the most advanced techniques of patient care for all aspects of sports medicine.