Soccer

Emma Hayes confirmed as new head coach of United States women’s team

Emma Hayes is America-bound (PA)
Emma Hayes is America-bound (PA) Emma Hayes is America-bound (PA)

Chelsea manager Emma Hayes will become head coach of the United States women’s team at the end of the season.

Hayes will finish the 2023-24 Women’s Super League campaign with the Blues before she joins her new team two months before the 2024 Olympics in Paris.

Interim head coach Twila Kilgore will continue in her role and then join Hayes’ staff as an assistant coach.

“This is a huge honour to be given the opportunity to coach the most incredible team in world football history,” Hayes said.

“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.

The news comes after Chelsea announced 10 days ago that Hayes, who has guided them to a glut of silverware during more than a decade in charge, was to depart at the conclusion of the current campaign “to pursue a new opportunity outside of the Women’s Super League and club football.”

She told a press conference before Chelsea’s 3-0 defeat of Everton: “The time is right. I will work with the club and do everything I can to make sure there is as good a transition as possible so my successor can have as much as success as I have.”

Everton v Chelsea – Barclays Women’s Super League – Walton Hall Park
Everton v Chelsea – Barclays Women’s Super League – Walton Hall Park Emma Hayes had good times at Chelsea (Tim Markland/PA)

Hayes, 47, had been strongly linked with the United States job, a position vacated by Vlatko Andonovski in August after he oversaw a last-16 exit at the summer’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.

Hayes, who got the Chelsea job in the summer of 2012, led the club to six WSL titles, five FA Cups and two League Cups, a haul featuring two league and FA Cup doubles and one domestic treble, while they were Champions League runners-up in 2021.

She is a six-time WSL manager of the season and was named FIFA’s women’s manager of the year in 2021.

Hayes’ side currently top the table as they look to claim the title for a fifth successive campaign.

The Blues’ bid for their first Champions League trophy continues on Wednesday away at Real Madrid in Group D.