Kreis speaking after leading Real Salt Lake to the 2009 MLS title
|Full name||Jason Clarence Kreis|
|Date of birth||December 29, 1972|
|Place of birth||Omaha, Nebraska, United States|
|Height||5 ft 8 in (1.73 m)|
|Current club||Real Salt Lake (head coach)|
|1991-1994||Duke Blue Devils|
|1994||New Orleans Riverboat Gamblers|
|2005-2007||Real Salt Lake||58||(17)|
|2007-||Real Salt Lake|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
† Appearances (Goals).
Kreis spent the majority of his playing career in MLS in the United States, initially with Dallas Burn, and then with Real Salt Lake. In total he made over 300 professional appearances, was Major League Soccer MVP in 1999, and is currently the third highest scorer in MLS regular season history. He also earned fourteen caps with the United States national team.
Kreis played for the Gladiator Soccer Club in his hometown of Omaha, where his parents were among the pioneers who established this first premier/select club within the state. As a freshman at Burke High School in Omaha, Kreis was selected First Team All-State. He remains the only freshman selected to the first team. Following his freshman year, Kreis and his family moved to Mandeville, Louisiana, where he led Mandeville High School to several Class 5A state soccer tournaments, but never won a state title, losing to Lafayette High in the quarterfinals his senior year. While at Mandeville, he was also a standout performer for the Baton Rouge United Jags, a U-19 Select team that finished as national runner-up in 1991 and won the prestigious Capital Cup tournament in Washington, D.C.
In 1993, Kreis played during the summer for the Raleigh Flyers of the USISL. In the summer of 1994, he returned to Louisiana to play for the New Orleans Riverboat Gamblers, also of the USISL. After finishing his collegiate eligibility in 1994, Kreis signed his first professional contract with the Raleigh Flyers in the spring of 1995.
On August 1, 1995, Kreis signed a contract with Major League Soccer as the league prepared for its inaugural season. Kreis was drafted forty-third overall by the Dallas Burn in the fifth round of the MLS Inaugural Draft. He scored the first goal in Burn history. In 1999, Kreis was the first American-born player to be named league MVP after he led the league in points and goals, and also registered the first 15-goal, 15-assist season in league history. The five-time all-star led his team in goals five times and in points four times.
On June 26, 2004, Kreis scored his eighty-ninth league goal against DC United, moving past Roy Lassiter to the top of the league's all-time goal-scoring chart. Kreis remained the all time goalscoring leader for more than three years until Jaime Moreno surpassed his record on August 22, 2007. He ended his ninth MLS season with career totals of 91 goals and 65 assists for 247 points, plus added four goals and two assists in the playoffs.
Real Salt Lake
On November 17, 2004, Kreis was traded to Real Salt Lake, becoming the first player in the club's history. He left Dallas as the franchise's all-time leader in games played (247), goals (91), assists (65), and points (247). Kreis scored the first goal in Salt Lake's history in its second match, a 3–1 loss to the Los Angeles Galaxy. In doing so, he became the first player in league history to do so for two different teams, as he scored the inaugural goal for Dallas in 1996 as well. On August 13, 2005, he became the first player in MLS history to score 100 career league goals. He retired as a player early in the 2007 season, finishing with 108 career goals.
With only 14 international appearances, Kreis was never able to translate his club success into one with the U.S. national team. He received his first cap on August 30, 1996, against El Salvador. Kreis scored his only international goal on September 8, 1999 in a 2-2 draw against Jamaica.
|1.||September 8, 1999||National Stadium, Kingston, Jamaica||Jamaica||1 – 0||2 – 2||Friendly|
On May 3, 2007, Kreis retired from professional competition, and was announced as the new head coach of Real Salt Lake, retiring as a player and taking over the coaching reins from John Ellinger; at the time of his hire, Kreis became the youngest active head coach in MLS at 34 years and 127 days. He led Salt Lake to its first-post season playoff appearance in 2008 and in 2009 he coached the team to its first MLS Cup championship. He is the youngest coach in MLS history to win the MLS Cup. He has guided Real Salt Lake to the CONCACAF Champions League knockout round in the 2010-11 season by winning Group A.
Real Salt Lake signed Kreis to a contract extension on March 24, 2011 that will keep him at the RSL helm through the 2013 season. The club also announced that the RSL number 9 jersey from his playing days would be retired by the club on July 4, 2011.
Kreis is known for his single-minded focus to soccer, admitting to being obsessive about game preparation. Real Salt Lake midfielder Kyle Beckerman said about him in a 2011 interview, "I don't think he watches other sports. He just met Jimmer Fredette the other day, and he didn't know who Jimmer was."
Club career statistics
|Club performance||League||Cup||League Cup||Continental||Total|
|USA||League||Open Cup||League Cup||North America||Total|
|1996||Dallas Burn||Major League Soccer||31||13||0||0||2||1||0||0||33||14|
|2005||Real Salt Lake||24||9||0||0||0||0||0||0||24||9|
- As of July 5, 2013
|Real Salt Lake||May 3, 2007||Present||239||102||77||60||42.68|
- 1.^ Date hired.
- 2.^ Date fired or indication he is the current head coach.
- 3.^ Includes league, U.S. Open Cup, MLS Cup Playoffs and CONCACAF Champions League games.
- NEBRASKA USA TODAY - Wednesday, June 8, 1988
- Flyers top Dynamo 2-1 in a shootout The News & Observer - Wednesday, June 9, 1993
- KREIS LEADS GAMBLERS' ROUT, 5-1 Times-Picayune, The (New Orleans, LA) - Saturday, July 9, 1994
- Flyers' Kreis signs deal with Major League Soccer The News & Observer - Wednesday, August 2, 1995
- ' Late goal gives U.S. tie with Jamaica' http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/soccer/news/1999/09/08/us_jamaica_ap/
- Real Salt Lake captain Jason Kreis retires, named head coach
- Davis, Randy (March 25, 2011). "Real Salt Lake extend Kreis' contract through '13". MLSSoccer.com. Retrieved April 24, 2011.
- Fredette, who completed his college basketball career at nearby Brigham Young University in 2011, was the consensus college player of the year in the 2010–11 season.
- Wahl, Grant (April 25, 2011). "A Real Kick Up". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved April 24, 2011.