Photo courtesy LA Galaxy II
CARSON, Calif. – LA Galaxy Academy Director Mike Muñoz has been named as the new Head Coach of the LA Galaxy II, the club announced today. Muñoz, 33, takes over as Los Dos head coach in the USL after spending time as a coach and the Director of the LA Galaxy Academy, which he helped develop into one of the most successful in Major League Soccer, with 14 Academy products signed across LA Galaxy and LA Galaxy II.
“We are extremely thrilled to name Mike head coach of LA Galaxy II,” said LA Galaxy General Manager Peter Vagenas. “He has been an instrumental part in making our Academy the best in this country and has a proven track record as a coach. His knowledge of this club and our players across LA Galaxy II and our Academy make him an excellent choice to lead this team. We are confident that Mike will continue to develop players into top professionals as he takes over as Galaxy II Head Coach.”
Muñoz takes over current Galaxy head coach Curt Onalfo’s former position as LA Galaxy II Head Coach after serving as an LA Galaxy Academy coach since 2013. All nine of the LA Galaxy Academy products on LA Galaxy II’s roster spent time playing under Muñoz during their time with the Galaxy Academy.
“I am greatly honored and excited to take over as LA Galaxy II Head Coach,” said Muñoz. “I have an enormous amount of respect and gratitude for this club. We have a very young and talented roster that will continue to grow and develop as professionals that can ultimate benefit the LA Galaxy as they pursue more MLS Cups. I am thankful to Chris Klein, Peter Vagenas and Curt Onalfo for the opportunity and look forward to getting to work.”
The former LA Galaxy midfielder had previously been a part of the LA Galaxy Academy coaching staff since 2013, coaching both the LA Galaxy U-14’s and U-16’s during that time while later taking over as the club’s Academy Director. Muñoz had also spent time as coach for the Real Salt Lake-Arizona Academy U-16’s, Chivas USA Academy U-16’s and on the U.S. U-14 and U-15 National Team staff since retiring from his playing career in 2009. For the 2010-11 season, he was named the U.S. Development Academy U-16 Coach of the Year.
Prior to his coaching career, Muñoz played professionally in Major League Soccer. Muñoz was selected by Chivas USA in the third round of the 2005 MLS Supplemental Draft and played two seasons for the club, making his professional debut on Aug. 13, 2005 at RFK Stadium against D.C. United. Muñoz played for the California Victory of the USL First Division in 2007 and returned to MLS when he signed with the Galaxy on Aug. 1, 2008. He made his first team debut with the Galaxy on Sept. 6, coming on as a second half substitute against Real Salt Lake, while also appearing in 10 Reserve League games.
A native of Bellflower, Calif., Muñoz graduated from Los Alamitos High School before earning a scholarship to the University of California, Berkeley, where he earned All-Pac-10 Second Team honors as a freshman and All-Pac-10 First Team honors during both his sophomore and junior seasons
Since his time on staff with the LA Galaxy Academy, Muñoz has assisted in the development of various LA Galaxy and LA Galaxy II Homegrown Players, including Bradford Jamieson IV, Raul Mendiola, Jaime Villarreal, Eric Lopez, Hugo Arellano, Nathan Smith, Adrian Vera, Ethan Zubak and Adonis Amaya.