United States national team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann has weighed in on the future of prized college star Jordan Morris, insisting that the former Sounders FC Academy product should turn pro instead of returning for his senior year at Stanford.

Klinsmann – who last year gave Morris the opportunity to become the first college player to make an appearance with the USMNT since 1999 – said this week that he recognizes the weight of Morris’ decision and the implications of what comes next.

“He has to decide what is his next step. His next step obviously has to be becoming a professional," Klinsmann said in comments provided by U.S. Soccer. "It’s not an easy decision for him."

Morris, who hails from Mercer Island and spent the 2012-13 season with the Sounders FC Academy, has already been offered the most lucrative Homegrown Player deal in league history by the Sounders. Morris declined to speak publicly about his pending decision after he led Stanford to their first-ever NCAA title last weekend.

Morris was named the PAC-12 Player of the Year and a first-team NSCAA All-American this year. He’s also one of three finalists for the Hermann Trophy Award, honoring the top college player in the nation.

ESPN analyst Taylor Twellman revealed during the network’s broadcast of the College Cup last weekend that Morris has received an offer from a Bundesliga club, but there’s been no confirmation of any offer outside of the one from the Sounders.

Either way, Klinsmann said Morris will need playing time wherever he lands in order to stay on the USMNT radar. Morris has scored one goal in seven appearances with the senior team and will suit up for the Under-23 team in March as the U.S. looks to qualify for the Olympics for the first time since 2008.

"From our standpoint, it’s very, very important that he chooses an environment where he gets to play," Klinsmann said. "He needs to play in order to be in a good position to be a continuous part of the national team program, and also the Olympic team that will hopefully qualify for the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro at the end of March."



The stage is set. We host Real Salt Lake in Round One of the Audi 2021 MLS Cup Playoffs on Tuesday, Nov. 23 at 7:30 PM. Get your tickets now.



You're not just watching a soccer match when you come to a Sounders game, you're getting the whole matchday experience. Join the Sounders Family.