Tom Sermanni will replace Pia Sundhage as the new U.S. women’s soccer team head coach.
After eight years and a pair of quarterfinals appearances in the last two World Cups as Australia’s head coach, Sermanni will now take over arguably the best women’s soccer team in the world. With that privilege, however, comes the not-so-enviable task of replacing Sundhage – a fantastic leader who led the U.S. to consecutive gold medals and a World Cup appearance (which they should have won).
"He has the knowledge, experience and vision to take on the challenge of keeping our team at the top of the world,'' U.S. Soccer Federation president Sunil Gulati said in a statement (via SI). "He has a tremendous passion for the game, knows the American players, understands our system and knows the process of preparing a team for a World Cup tournament.''
Sermanni, for his part, is thrilled with the opportunity.
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"U.S. Soccer has always been at the forefront of supporting the women's game, and it's exciting to coach the team in this next chapter of its history,'' Sermanni said.
"After coaching against many of these players for years, I am looking forward to working with an accomplished group of veterans while integrating the numerous talented young players who are itching for a chance to prove themselves.
"I'm honored to have this opportunity to work with tremendous players and in a program that has had such a tradition of success,'' he said.
The federation considered more than 30 candidates before finally making their decision.
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(Kudos Sports Illustrated)