If you were looking for a local hook to hang your hat on in June when the World Cup hits the pitch in South Africa, the U.S. men's team has you covered.
On Friday, head coach Bob Bradley hired Racine native Jesse Marsch, a now-retired veteran MLS midfielder, as an assistant coach. He joins the team Wednesday at its training camp at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif.
Marsch played in the MLS since it was born 14 years ago and recently announced his retirement. He was most recently playing for Chivas USA. He also made two appearances with the team he now coaches: once in 2001 and most recently in 2007.
"I'm excited about this opportunity with U.S. Soccer," Marsch told ussoccer.com. "I am looking forward to working hard to help this team be successful in the future."
Bradley praised the former Chivas USA captain, telling the site, "I have had the opportunity to work with Jesse for many years, and I believe the knowledge and experience he brings will be a great benefit to both the players and the coaching staff."
Marsch lives in Manhattan Beach, Calif., with his wife and three kids.
When the cup starts in June, the U.S. team -- making its sixth straight World Cup finals tournament appearance -- will compete in Group C against England, Slovenia and Algeria. The squad faces ninth-ranked England on June 12 and then plays Slovenia on June 18 and Algeria on June 23.
The U.S. Men's National Team -- ranked 14 by FIFA -- has been drawn into Group C with England, 33rd-ranked Slovenia and No. 31 Algeria for the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa.
The U.S. will open its sixth consecutive World Cup finals tournament against England on June 12 in Rustenburg, and will follow that game with matches against Slovenia on June 18 in Johannesburg and Algeria on June 23 in Tshwane/Pretoria.
In advance of the World Cup tourney, the U.S. team faces El Salvador on Feb. 24 in Florida and No. 3 Netherlands in Amsterdam on March 3.
Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.
He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.
With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in episodes of TV's "Party of Five" and "Dawson's Creek," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.
He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for OnMilwaukee.com and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.
In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area. He has also won awards from the Milwaukee Press Club.
He can be heard weekly on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories.