The LA Galaxy announced Kevin Hartman has been appointed director of the club’s academy. He will lead “administrative and operational components in the Academy and report to LA Galaxy Director of Methodology and Development Juan Carlos Ortega,” per a team release.
Hartman, 46, moves into the new role after leading the LA Galaxy Girls Academy, which closed recently after the collapse of the U.S. Soccer Development Academy. He had been in that role since 2017.
“I am excited to continue to play a role in the development of some of the most talented youth prospects in North America,” said Hartman in a team statement. “Youth development will continue to be a staple of success for the LA Galaxy and I look forward to supporting our Academy to ensure we are developing quality people on and off the field.”
Hartman spent the bulk of his pro playing career with the Galaxy, where he began his MLS tenure in 1997 and stayed through 2006. Helping the club win their first two MLS Cup titles, Hartman is the all-time appearances leader for the Galaxy in goal, with 243, he also helped LA win two U.S. Open Cups and two Supporters’ Shields in his tenure. He also had sizable runs with Kansas City and FC Dallas, before serving as a backup with the New York Red Bulls to wrap up his playing career after the 2013 season.
He’ll have some work to do in his new role, with the USSDA’s closure, MLS is building a new boys elite national soccer competition and while some elements will be universal, there’s going to be new standards and expectations. Plus, given the upheaval he’ll likely need to play a role to maintain the Galaxy’s status as a top program, recruiting players and making sure other top prospects stick around.
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