Manager PETER VERMES oversees all soccer operations for Sporting Kansas City, including the active roster and the Sporting Kansas City Juniors program. Vermes, an original member of Major League Soccer, retired from the League in 2002, closing out his playing career in Kansas City after stints with the New York/New Jersey MetroStars and Colorado Rapids.
Following a standout high school career in which he was named New Jersey Player of the Year, Vermes was a star forward and All-American at Rutgers University. After college, Vermes represented the United States in the 1988 Olympics in Seoul, Korea, and was named 1988 Chevrolet U.S. Male Soccer Athlete of the Year for his efforts.
Vermes was an integral part of a young U.S. team at the 1990 World Cup in Italy, where he nearly scored a sensational goal against the host Azzurri. It marked the first time the United States had qualified for the World Cup in 40 years and set the stage for the progress of the U.S. National Team. In 1989 and 1990, Vermes became the first American to play in the Hungarian and Dutch First Divisions, appearing for Raba ETO and FC Volendam, respectively. He later spent five years with Figueras of the Spanish Second Division.
For MLS’ inaugural season in 1996, Vermes served as captain of the New York/New Jersey MetroStars. In 1997, he was traded to the Colorado Rapids for current Sporting Kansas City Assistant Coach Kerry Zavagnin and played in Denver through the 1999 season, leading the Rapids to the 1997 MLS Cup Final.
Vermes joined Kansas City in 2000 for what would be the most successful seasons of his MLS career. During his first year in Kansas City, he anchored one of the best defenses in league history and won MLS Defender of the Year honors in helping lead the Wizards to the 2000 MLS Cup Championship. He retired in 2002 after appearing in 184 MLS matches and playing more than 16,000 minutes. He was nominated on the players' ballot for the National Soccer Hall of Fame from 2007-2012. In 2013, Vermes became eligible for the veteran ballot and on October 11, 2013, Vermes was inducted into the National Soccer Hall of Fame.
Sporting Kansas City’s manager for the past six seasons, Vermes is the second-longest serving head coach in team history. He has won two major trophies – the 2012 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup and the 2013 MLS Cup championship – as well as two MLS Eastern Conference regular season titles (2011, 2012). He is the only person to ever win the MLS Cup as both a player and a coach with the same team.
Vermes and his wife Susan have two children, Nicole and Kyle. He is a member of the U.S. Soccer Board of Directors and has a soccer park named after him in his home state of New Jersey.