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Emma Hayes hired as USWNT head coach in record deal

Emma Hayes hired as USWNT head coach in record deal

The U.S. women’s national team will have a new head coach ahead of the 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris.

Emma Hayes has officially been hired as the 10th head coach in program history, U.S. Soccer announced Tuesday. Hayes will finish the 2023-24 Women’s Super League season in England with Chelsea before joining the USWNT officially in May.

Hayes will become the highest paid women’s soccer coach in the world, per U.S. Soccer’s announcement.

Interim head coach Twila Kilgore will continue in her current role before joining Hayes’ staff full-time as an assistant coach.

“This is a huge honor to be given the opportunity to coach the most incredible team in world football history,” said Hayes. “The feelings and connection I have for this team and for this country run deep. I’ve dreamed about coaching the USA for a long time so to get this opportunity is a dream come true. I know there is work to do to achieve our goals of winning consistently at the highest levels. To get there, it will require dedication, devotion and collaboration from the players, staff and everyone at the U.S. Soccer Federation.”

Hayes joined Chelsea in 2012 and during her tenure led the club to six FA WSL titles, five Women’s FA Cups, two FA Women’s League Cups, one FA Women’s Spring Series trophy and one FA Women’s Community Shield.

She has been named FA WSL Manager of the Season on six occasions and LMA WSL Manager of the Season five times. Hayes was also inducted into the WSL Hall of Fame in 2021.

“This is a unique situation, but the team is in safe hands with Twila,” said U.S. Soccer Sporting Director Matt Crocker. “Her stewardship will be crucial during this period as we are focused on success at the Olympics. Emma has endorsed Twila, she will be a key part of Emma’s staff when she arrives and moving forward, and we are excited for what’s to come with our USWNT program.”  

The 47-year-old Hayes previously managed in the United States with the Long Island Lady Riders and at Iona College. After a two-year stint as an assistant coach at Arsenal, Hayes returned to the U.S. in 2008, serving as head coach of the NWSL’s Chicago Red Stars until 2010.

The USWNT closes its 2023 schedule with a pair of home friendlies against China PR on Dec. 2 and 5. 2024 will mark a fresh start for the USWNT after a Round of 16 exit at the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.

It marked the worst World Cup exit in program history.

Chelsea is currently top of the WSL standings with 16 points earned through six matches. The Blues begin their UEFA Women’s Champions League quest on Wednesday against Real Madrid.

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