Sunday, April 6, 2014

US Soccer Abruptly Fires Women's Coach Tom Sermanni

The United States Women's National Soccer Team is coming off a 2-0 friendly win over China. Yet just hours later, they abruptly fired head coach Tom Sermanni. Maybe this was due to a 7th place finish at the Algarve Cup, which had the first back-to-back losses for the USWNT since 2001. Sermanni reportedly had no idea this was coming and is shocked.

However, why play a match against China and fire him afterwards with another match in a few days instead of right after the tournament, if it had to do with the poor Algarve Cup performance? Rumors have circulated that players have been unhappy with his approach and the constant tinkering with the lineup to try and find the perfect one in time for the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup in Canada. It has come out though that players were not behind it, and many spoke about how they liked him. However, nobody seems to know exactly why this happened yet. Of course, it will come out soon, especially with a game on Thursday and the start of the NWSL (National Women's Soccer League) on Saturday. In an update, it seems his laid back style did not mesh well with what Sunil Gulati and US Soccer wanted.

Nadeshiko Japan has seemed to have the United States' number since the 2011 Women's World Cup in big matches. Of course, USA defeated Japan for the London 2012 Gold Medal, however an obvious handball that was missed by the ref which would've led to a Japan PK, and likely goal, helped with that. Japan has been a model of consistency, discipline and technicality. Will one year with a new coach and new scheme be enough for the United States to roll through the world's best teams, particularly Japan, next summer? Sweden is another contender who have played very well against the US beating them at the 2011 Women's World Cup and 2014 Algarve Cup. And now they've got former US Coach Pia Sundhage coaching them. Though if any team is built to do it, it would be the United States.

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