Former U.S. Men’s National Team goalkeeper and three-time U.S. Soccer Athlete of the Year Kasey Keller will join ESPN as a soccer analyst. Keller, who retired last year after three seasons with Major League Soccer’s Seattle Sounders, will primarily serve as a studio analyst for select MLS and U.S. Men’s National Team matches, and be part of ESPN’s presentation of the UEFA European Football Championship™ 2012 from June 8 – July 1.
Keller will make his ESPN television debut during the network’s 2012 Major League Soccer season opener – Portland Timbers vs. Philadelphia Union on Monday, March 12, on ESPN2 and ESPN3, live from JELD-WEN Field in Portland, Ore. The former standout professional goalkeeper will continue to serve as the primary analyst for Seattle Sounders matches on regional television.
During the UEFA European Football Championship in June, Keller will be a match analyst. He will also have a studio role alongside the likes of fellow analysts Alexi Lalas, Steve McManaman and Michael Ballack, who’ll join ESPN from Bayer Leverkusen in Germany’s Bundesliga. Preceding the European Championship on Wednesday, May 30, Keller will be at FedEx Field in Landover, Md., providing studio analysis for ESPN2’s presentation of the USA vs. Brazil international match.
“Kasey Keller is one in a select group of exceptional American goalkeepers with a remarkable knowledge of the game and the ability to communicate it with insight. He is a great addition to our analyst team,” said Jed Drake, ESPN senior vice president and executive producer.
Keller said: “I look forward to joining the ESPN soccer team and the opportunity to share my knowledge of the sport with a fast-growing fan base in the United States.”
In 1992, Keller signed a contract and played for Millwall F.C. through 1996 when he moved to Leicester City F.C. (1996-99). He also played for Rayo Vallecano in Spain’s La Liga (1999-2001), Tottenham Hotspur (2001-05), Borussia Mönchengladbach in Germany’s Bundesliga (2005-07), Fulham (2007-08), before returning to the United States to play for the MLS expansion Sounders (2009-11). In all, Keller played in 609 professional matches in four countries.
Keller holds the record as the most-capped goalkeeper in the U.S. Men’s National Team with 102 appearances – starting two of three matches in the 1998 FIFA World Cup in France and starting all matches in the 2006 FIFA World Cup in Germany, including a 1-1 tie versus Italy. He was a member of the U.S. Men’s National Team that reached the quarterfinals in the 2002 FIFA World Cup, the most-successful run by a U.S. senior team in a modern FIFA World Cup. He is also one of the team’s all-time leaders in wins and not conceding goals.
Keller was on the U.S. Men’s National Team roster for the 1990 FIFA World Cup, in a back-up role to first team keeper Tony Meola.
A native of Olympia, Wash., Keller began his goalkeeping career with the Portland Timbers of the Western Soccer Alliance in 1989 while still a student at the University of Portland. That same year, he split time between the Timbers and the U.S. U-20 Men’s National Team, which finished fourth in the 1989 FIFA U-20 World Cup in Saudi Arabia. Keller was awarded the tournament’s silver ball as the competition’s second best player. As a college senior in 1991, he earned first team All-America honors and was named the 1991 Adidas Goalkeeper of the Year.