Chelsea boss Hayes confirmed as US women's soccer coach: official

<a class="link " href="" data-i13n="sec:content-canvas;subsec:anchor_text;elm:context_link" data-ylk="slk:Chelsea;sec:content-canvas;subsec:anchor_text;elm:context_link;itc:0">Chelsea</a>'s English manager Emma Hayes has been confirmed as the new head coach of the United States women's team (JUSTIN TALLIS)

Chelsea manager Emma Hayes has been appointed as the new head coach of the United States in a record deal that will make her the world's highest paid women's football coach, the United States Soccer Federation said Tuesday.

Hayes, 47, revealed earlier this month she plans to leave Chelsea at the end of the season after a trophy-laden spell in charge of the English club.

"This is a huge honor to be given the opportunity to coach the most incredible team in world football history," Hayes said in a USSF statement confirming her appointment.

US Soccer did not divulge details of Hayes' contract, but said she would become the "highest paid women's soccer in the world".

ESPN, citing a source with knowledge of the contract negotiations, reported that Hayes' deal would run through 2027 and would see her earn a salary that was "close if not equal" to the $1.6 million earned by US men's football coach Gregg Berhalter.

Hayes will see out her duties with Chelsea in the WSL and then formally take up her US role next year, two months before the 2024 Olympics in Paris, where the Americans will be looking to recapture the gold medal they last won in 2012.

Hayes is one of the most respected figures in the world of women's football, leading Chelsea to six WSL titles, five FA Cups and two league cups as well as other trophies. In 2021, she led Chelsea to the final of the women's Champions League and was named FIFA's women's coach of the year.

The English coach, who started her coaching career in women's club football in the United States in 2001 after a promising playing career was cut short by injury, will now be handed the task of returning the USA to the pinnacle of women's football.

The US women have dominated women's international football for much of the past decade, winning back-to-back World Cups in 2015 and 2019.

However the Americans were bundled out of the last World Cup in Australia and New Zealand in August in the last 16 -- the team's worst ever showing at a World Cup.

Hayes said her appointment to the US job was the realisation of a lifelong dream.

"The feelings and connection I have for this team and for this country run deep," Hayes said.

"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."

US Soccer sporting director Matt Crocker said Hayes was chosen after the federation worked through "a large list" of candidates.

"We had a group of excellent coaches and leaders to consider, but we felt strongly that Emma was the best person and coach to take the US Women's National Team forward," Crocker said.