Former W-League Coach of the Year and Lady Riders (now Long Island Rough Riders) head coach Emma Hayes has been named Head Coach of the U.S. Women's National Team, the U.S. Soccer Federation announced Tuesday.
Hayes, who is currently finishing her final season as Head Coach of English powerhouse Chelsea in the FA Women’s Super League, will take the reins of the national team going into the 2024 Paris Olympics. During her tenure at Chelsea, the club has won four consecutive WSL titles.
“We are excited to welcome Emma Hayes as the new coach of the USWNT and applaud U.S. Soccer’s decision to hire her,” said Amanda Vandervort, USL Super League and W League President. “Emma is an innovative coach, visionary leader, and dedicated champion for women’s soccer – and women in soccer – around the world. We look forward to continuing to support the USWNT as it begins this exciting next chapter.”
Hayes’ first coaching job was stateside, coaching the Lady Riders during the 2002 season before taking positions with Iona College from 2003-2006 and the Chicago Red Stars (Women's Professional Soccer) from 2008-2010.
In 2002, the Lady Riders won the W-League Northeast Division title with an 11-3-0 record. Hayes was voted W-League Coach of the Year as she found immediate success on the sidelines while serving as the youngest Head Coach in the league. Her time in the United States made a major impression and informed her future path to becoming one of the most successful managers in soccer.
“I've got so many fond memories of turning up in Long Island with a backpack and a thousand dollars and working for clubs across the whole of Long Island and Westchester and New York City,” Hayes said in a Q&A with U.S. Soccer’s website. “I've experienced everything from intramural soccer, recreational Sunday soccer, to the collegiate game, to USL, to the pro game, to state ODP, regionals.
“I've been a part of the entire soccer community when I worked there for 10 years and I totally understand the importance of the grassroots game and how lucky the U.S. are to have such a deep and rich pool of players to select from, and it's going to be my job to make sure I build upon the work that's already been done, and most importantly keep inspiring young girls to dream about playing on the best team in the world.”
Hayes will officially begin her tenure as the USWNT head coach at the conclusion of Chelsea’s season in late May 2024. She will have four matches as manager before the team competes in the Paris Olympics.