April 19, 2014
By Charles Cuttone
U.S. Soccer hopes to have women's coach by mid-May
U.S. Soccer plans to have a new head coach for the Women's National Team in place by mid-May.
Speaking at halftime of the New England Revolution-Chicago Fire telecast on NBCSN Saturday, U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati said the decision will be coming by them.
"We'll reach out to three or four candidates that we have on a very short list," said Gulati, of the process which he hopes to conclude in the next two weeks.
U.S. Soccer fired Tom Sermanni on April 6, following a 2-0 win over China. Sermanni had only been on the job since October of 2012. Jill Ellis coached the team four days later in a 3-0 win over China. Ellis, who also took over the team on an interim basis after Pia Sundhage left, had been a candidate when Sermanni was hired but she took herself out of the running at that time. No word on whether she is on U.S. Soccer's short list now.
Paul Riley, another candidate who was interviewed last time around, is likely staying with the Portland Thorns, the defending champions of the National Women's Soccer League, and a club he just took over this season.
"I'm so happy in Portland," Riley told Big Apple Soccer on Friday. "Obviously you would want to the U.S. job. Itís the No. 1 job in the world. But I probably have the No. 1 club -- female club job in the world; the fan base, the support we get.
"The whole concentration really is getting the team ready for the weekend. If something happens in that direction, I guess we'll deal with it then. I've got a two-year contract in Portland. I'm really happy with it. If I could do both, I would do both. But I don't think that will happen anyway. I think they'll go a different route and I'm sure they'll have somebody in place over the few weeks to take the team forward."
There is some urgency in getting a new National Team coach on board, as qualification for the Women's World Cup begins later in the summer.