Bruce Arena, whose coaching record includes five NCAA Championships as the head coach of Virginia, two FIFA World Cups with the United States and two MLS Cup titles, has been elected to the National Soccer Hall of Fame Class of 2010 on the Builder ballot.
To be eligible for the Hall of Fame as a Builder, an individual in a non-playing capacity must have demonstrated a major, sustained and positive impact on U.S. soccer on a national or first division professional level for a minimum of 10 years.
Arena was named on 78 percent of the ballots. In 2009, Arena was the leading vote-getter on the Builder ballot, but did not meet the requirement of being named to 50 percent of the ballots to earn election.
"Bruce Arena's passion for the game, ability to build exceptionally competitive teams at the collegiate and the professional level, and his outstanding work with the U.S. Men's National Team are well known and highly regarded by his colleagues and opponents," HOF President Jonathan Ullman stated. "His tremendous record of service in soccer and success in the game has earned him election to the Hall of Fame."
One of the most successful coaches in the history of soccer in the United States, Arena has already left his mark on the collegiate, professional and national team levels. In 18 seasons at the University of Virginia (seven of which he was also an assistant men's lacrosse coach), Arena won five national championships, including a dynastic four in a row from 1991-1994 on his way to an overall 295-51-31 record that effectively built the Cavaliers' program.
Arena left Virginia to take the head coaching position at newly created D.C. United in the inaugural MLS season in 1996. Along with the MLS Cup, the 1996 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup title earned D.C. the "Double" for the year, cementing the club in U.S. Soccer history. D.C. United went on to repeat its MLS Cup win in 1997, earning Arena MLS Coach of the Year honors.
Named as head coach of the U.S. Men's National Team after a disappointing 1998 FIFA World Cup, Arena built one of the most successful stretches in U.S. Soccer history. The height of his success on the national level was leading the team to their best-ever finish at the FIFA World Cup, reaching the quarterfinals in 2002 before losing a controversial game to world-power Germany. During his eight years as head coach, Arena compiled a record of 71-30-29, earning a .658 winning percentage.
After his time with the national team, Arena moved back into MLS, coaching the New York Red Bulls for a year and a half before being named general manager and head coach of the LA Galaxy in August of 2008. A year later, Arena led the Galaxy to the 2009 MLS Cup, falling to Real Salt Lake in a shootout.
The selection committee for the Builder election consists of select soccer administrators and all Hall of Famers. The committee members vote for up to five Builders from the list of eligible candidates an annual 10-person ballot determined by a screening committee. One Builder can be elected each year and must have appeared on at least 50 percent of the ballots.
Arena joins Thomas Dooley and Preki Radosavljevic, the Player electees to the Class of 2010. Results of the Veteran Player ballot will be released at a future date. The 2010 induction ceremony will likely be scheduled for this summer. Details are still being finalized and will be announced at a later date.
This article and full ballot results and Arena's stats can be found at VirginiaSports.com.