Landon Donovan named coach of USL side San Diego Loyal

Former United States international Landon Donovan has been named coach of United Soccer League side San Diego Loyal.

Donovan is also a vice president in charge of soccer operations at the second-tier franchise -- which will take to the pitch for the first time in 2020 -- and is part of the team's ownership group.

"I am truly honored to be named the first Manager in San Diego Loyal history," Donovan said in a team release. "This is the right place, at the right time, with the right people for me to begin my managerial career.

"I am extremely grateful to [club supporters group] The Locals and all of our amazing fans for putting their faith in me to help build a club that is authentically San Diegan. Together, we will put forward a product that all of San Diego can be proud of and that will bring smiles to countless faces."

Donovan, 37, won MLS Cup six times in his playing career, twice with San Jose Earthquakes and four times with the LA Galaxy, as well as playing in the Bundesliga for Bayer Leverkusen and the Premier League for Everton.

"There are no names more synonymous with men's soccer in the U.S. than Landon Donovan," said San Diego Loyal chairman Andrew Vassiliadis.

"Landon's talent and knowledge of the game goes beyond just his skills as a player; during all those years he was a student of the sport and developed relationships within the industry that will be vital to us as we launch our club and assemble its first roster. We are honored to have him lead our technical side, both on and off the pitch."

The club said that Donovan is expected to complete his U.S. Soccer coaching license sometime during the 2020 season.

The National Soccer Hall of Famer most recently played for indoor team San Diego Sockers.