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The Most Notable Women Coaches of the USWNT

The United States Women's National Soccer Team has been fortunate to have had several impactful and successful coaches throughout its history. Many of the coaches are women who have made significant impacts in the success and empowerment of players competing in one of the most competitive soccer programs. Here are some of the most notable ones.

April Heinrichs: 

April Heinrichs became the head coach of the USWNT after Tony DiCiccio, and she made significant contributions during her tenure. This includes leading the team to a gold medal at the 2004 Athens Olympics, showcasing their dominance on the international stage and solidifying their reputation as one of the world’s top teams.

Heinrichs played a crucial role in developing young talents and integrating them into the national team setup. She focused on helping players' skills and confidence, which contributed to the team's success during her tenure and beyond. The team consistently performed well in major tournaments under her leadership, which laid the groundwork for future coaches and players. Heinrichs' dedication to excellence and commitment to player development influenced the team’s culture and approach to the game, leaving a lasting impact on the USWNT.

Courtesy of Girls Soccer Network

Pia Sundhage: 

Former Swedish international player Pia Sundhage coached the USWNT from 2007-2012. During her tenure as head coach of the United States Women's National Team, she achieved

significant success and left a lasting legacy. Under Sundhage's leadership, the USWNT won gold at both the 2008 Beijing Olympics and the 2012 London Olympics, once again showcasing their dominance on the international stage and reaffirming their status. She guided the team to the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup final, where they narrowly lost to Japan in a dramatic penalty shootout. Despite falling short, the team's performance throughout the tournament with Sundhage’s leadership was commendable. 

Sundhage's charismatic personality and positive coaching style had a significant impact on women's soccer culture in the United States by inspiring players to express themselves on the field and encouraging creativity and joy in the game. Overall, Sundhage's achievements as head coach of the USWNT secured her legacy as one of the most successful coaches in the team's history. 

Courtesy of Bleacher Report

Jill Ellis:

Jill Ellis served as head coach from 2014 to 2019 and achieved numerous milestones during her tenure. Under her leadership, the USWNT won the FIFA Women's World Cup in 2015 and 2019. The 2015 victory in Canada saw the USWNT put on a commanding performance throughout the tournament, culminating in a 5-2 win against Japan in the final. The 2019 triumph in France further cemented the team's legacy, with a 2-0 victory over the Netherlands in the final. 

Under Ellis, the USWNT embarked on several impressive winning streaks, like their 28-game unbeaten streak leading up to the 2015 World Cup. This streak included victories in competitive and friendly matches, showcasing the team's consistency. Ellis provided opportunities for young players to showcase their skills and integrated them seamlessly into the team, ensuring a strong pipeline of talent for the future. Overall, Ellis' achievements as head coach of the USWNT solidified her as one of the most successful coaches in women's soccer history.

Courtesy of Yahoo Sports

Each of these coaches has left a lasting legacy on the USWNT, contributing to its continued dominance and success on the international level.

In June, Emma Hayes will leave Chelsea and become the head coach of the USWNT. We can expect her to be a valuable contribution to this team's success going forward, with the hope that she will help carry on the USWNT legacy and build on what those before her have done.

Edited by: Emma Habel

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