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Greg Ryan Announcement Monday

USSF President Sunil Gulati and Secretary General Dan Flynn will address U.S. women's national team coach Greg Ryan's status during a media teleconference at 4 p.m. (Eastern) on Monday.

From all indications, Ryan is finished after nearly three years in charge. I would be shocked if they decided to retain him. We will know for sure Monday.

Failure to reach the World Cup final, lackluster play throughout the tournament, an embarrassing loss to Brazil in the semis and that infamous goalkeeping change appear to have doomed Ryan's chances of having his contract renewed after the current deal expires Dec. 31.

The timing of his expected dismissal makes sense. The women's team just completed a three-game friendly series with Mexico, winning twice and tying once, and is not expected to play again this year. A new coach would open training camp in early 2008 and begin preparing for the Olympics in China. Among the potential candidates are Jillian Ellis, head coach of UCLA and the U.S. under-20 national team; Tony DiCicco, who guided the United States to the 1999 World Cup title; Sweden's Pia Sundhage; Santa Clara University Coach Jerry Smith; and Washington Freedom Coach Jim Gabarra.

By Steve Goff  |  October 21, 2007; 9:34 PM ET
Categories:  Women  
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Next: United News & Notes (aka Injury Central)


Hoping that Greg goes back to obscurity and doesn't get to coach even youth teams.

Posted by: JP | October 21, 2007 9:47 PM | Report abuse

the future of the USWNT seems a little murky. hopefully the new WUSA gets going and we get some new blood infused in there.

Posted by: steve-o | October 21, 2007 9:48 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for keeping us up on the latest!
Best wishes to Kevin Payne and his family.


Posted by: Chris | October 21, 2007 9:56 PM | Report abuse

Thanks Steve. I'll be in front of my computer hitting refresh from 4:05.

Posted by: I-270, Exit 1 | October 21, 2007 11:06 PM | Report abuse


Any indication that Sunil's going to call up Klinsmann for this job?

I figure he just calls him up for any/all vacant (or not so vacant) posts at US Soccer.

Posted by: Kim | October 22, 2007 12:04 AM | Report abuse

Any ideas on who the next coach will be and will that person be in charge for the Olympics?

Posted by: sitruc | October 22, 2007 12:37 AM | Report abuse

I want an American coach who isn't so closely tied to the 1999 team (it's simply time to move on).

I want Jim Gabarra.

Now, if someone could forward this to Sunil, tell him I'll do Columbia's Kilmer Bad Poetry contest this year in his honor. Hell, I'll even join Philo.

Posted by: Roar, Lion, Roar | October 22, 2007 2:24 AM | Report abuse

Was that fourth paragraph always there or is the lack of sleep getting to me again?

Posted by: sitruc | October 22, 2007 2:31 AM | Report abuse

thank god. he has no business coaching one of the premiere teams in the world. get him the 'F' outta there.

Posted by: papa bear | October 22, 2007 4:24 AM | Report abuse

Tom Stone really should be in the mix. did a great job w/ Atlanta in the WUSa and has never had a problem getting his girls to play for him.

Posted by: Mark | October 22, 2007 8:29 AM | Report abuse

Farewell to the incompetent boob who never should have had the job in the first place. Thanks for nothing Dr. Bob.

Hoping that the US hires a woman with international experience. Pia Sundhage would be fine.

Posted by: truth | October 22, 2007 8:47 AM | Report abuse

[Sitruc you are not going crazy - unless I also am :)- the fourth paragraph wasn't intitially there. Also I'm pretty sure the title of the post changed]

Any indication if they will be announcing a replacement or just that Ryan is stepping down?

Posted by: emanon | October 22, 2007 9:35 AM | Report abuse

Was that fourth paragraph always there or is the lack of sleep getting to me again?

Posted by: sitruc | October 22, 2007 02:31 AM

I didn't see it last night either, so I think it's a bonus paragraph. If the poor showing in the WWC (and yes, third place is a poor showing for us) was not enough, the the 1-1 draw with Mexico should be the last straw.

Posted by: I-270, Exit 1 | October 22, 2007 9:36 AM | Report abuse

"Hoping that the US hires a woman with international experience." That didn't work out 100% well last time. More concerned with who develops and allows mids to turn and run at people instead of laying off to the back line for long bombs.

While they're at it, they should get a new PR guy. The scripted and cliched press messages are tiresome. When everything the team does, including a tie against Mexico in a meaningless exhibition, "shows what kind of character we have" then we might need to re-define "character".

Posted by: WNT fan | October 22, 2007 9:39 AM | Report abuse

Re-posting something with apologies. Now it's on topic and I still think it is funny. Translation of a German article about WNT team, using on-line tools, yields some interesting "Deutsch-lish" -- "to the well-being of the U.S. Frauenfussballs":

"Until today one waits in vain for an apology Ryans and a confession of its error its team by replacing the Torhueterin before the semi-final to have weakened. Solo one is the scapegoat, who is to hold for the fact that Ryan with one of the roughest wrong decisions of the U.S. Fussballgeschichte of the most embarrassing defeat of the U.S. Frauenfussballs smoothed the way. Admitted deficits But who gives already gladly voluntarily one up with 175,000 dollar per year endowed contract, if he knows that he will probably receive thereafter no comparable job offer more? Because that Ryan does not belong to the coaches of first grade, it was already indisputable with its obligation. No miracle thus that the media take also the federation into the obligation. As for instance Marks of Zeigler of San Diego union Tribune in a remarkable contribution. The athletic style, which Ryan the team drummed in in the past years, with long balls on Abby Wambach, proved with the WM as insufficient means. "we were out-played simply", say the experienced Stuermerin Shannon MacMillan. The earlier Trainerin of the U.S. national team April Heinrichs referred already in March 2005 in an interview nearly already prophetisch to the deficits of the crew: "we must spend more time at the ball and improve the technical talents further. The football we in ever stronger measure body-stresses, which concerns strength and mobility. But we must concentrate more on the technical sides." Strangely participateless so far the U.S. federation behaved and to be somewhat colorless president Sunil Gulati. One can only hope that one analyzes the situation in all peace there and then to 31 December 2007 the running out contract with Greg Ryan no longer extended. To the well-being of the U.S. Frauenfussballs."

Posted by: WNT fan | October 22, 2007 9:49 AM | Report abuse

WNT fan (9:39 a.m.) April Heinrichs had no international experience as a coach, just as a player. She was a mediocre college coach who hired mediocre college coach Greg Ryan as her assistant.

Posted by: truth | October 22, 2007 10:00 AM | Report abuse

Roar, Lion, Roar: To my mind, Jim Gabarra is the only named candidate who SHOULDN'T be in the mix. He was arguably one of the most under-performing coaches in the WUSA. While the Freedom won the final league championship, it was largely on the sheer talent of Hamm, Wambach, Mullinix, etc. For three years we suffered through Gabarra's inexplicable tactical and personnel decisions. I'd hate to see that bit of history replicated on the world stage.

And he's hardly outside of the '99 sphere of influence, given his marriage to UNC/WNT/Hall of Famer Carin Gabarra. If Jim gets the job, it will be the clearest indication that the old boys' network still drives USSF decisions.

Posted by: left coaster | October 22, 2007 10:07 AM | Report abuse

"While they're at it, they should get a new PR guy." --WNT Fan

They need a copy editor too. The new promos, in which Lilly and Wambach say "me and my teammates..." instead of "my teammates and I" are cringe-worthy. No wonder Lilly didn't become a teacher.

But I don't want to turn this into Grammar Insider.

Posted by: I-270, Exit 1 | October 22, 2007 10:20 AM | Report abuse

I think that Jillian Ellis would be an excellent choice. Here are some quotes from the UCLA web:

"In addition to her efforts in the college game, Ellis has also excelled at the international level, serving as the head coach of the Under-21 and Under-20 U.S. National Teams. She has led the U-21s to two Nordic Cup titles (2000 and 2005), including a trip to the finals in 2006. She was recently named head coach of the Under-20s in preparation for the World Championships in 2008. This past summer she coached the U-20s to a second-place showing at the Pan American Games in Brazil. In addition to her work with the U-21s and U-20s, Ellis served as a consultant with the U.S. Olympic Team in Sydney, Australia in the Summer of 2000. She has also worked extensively with the Under-16 U.S. National Team."

"Ellis is the daughter of legendary soccer coach John Ellis, who is a former assistant coach with the U.S. Women's National Team and has directed the Soccer Academy in Manassas, Virginia since 1984. John was a longtime soccer ambassador for the British government, helping to create soccer programs worldwide. He also served as head coach for the Trinidad and Tobago national team. Ellis' brother, Paul Ellis, is also a soccer coach. In 1998, he was head coach for the Region I U-17 team. A former assistant coach at George Mason University, he currently works full-time with his father at the Soccer Academy.

Jillian Ellis grew up in Portsmouth, England and came to the United States in 1981 at the age of 15. She also lived in Singapore for two years while her father helped to develop a national soccer program in that country. She earned her bachelor of arts degree in English Literature and Composition from the College of William & Mary in 1988 and currently resides in Los Angeles."

What an incredible soccer pedigree.

Posted by: Pedro Burrito | October 22, 2007 10:31 AM | Report abuse

I'm actually hoping US soccer can pry Anson Dorrance out of UNC -- He seems to dislike USS enough to be effective. And his record and grasp of coaching women are sterling.

When I heard about that goalkeeping change, I immediately flashed on Anson rolling his eyes, wondering what was going on ...

I also wonder just how much penance Hope Solo will tolerate before she decides enough is enough.

She did, after all, tell the truth. It's stunningly childish for the team to 'punish' her as they are ... what's next ... Hope must clean all their toilets w/ her toothbrush before they'll have milk and cookies w/ her? Or maybe go shopping together?

The team and USSoccer _are_ living in the past ... Julie Foudy's strong reaction to Hope's comments is one clue ... and when USS would run those abysmal "the best team you've never met' ads, ESPN would show an old ad from '99 ... Julie saying how much she loved those old ads.

Sorry but '99 was 8 years ago, Jules, and you're up in the booth.

My .02

Posted by: Fan w/ Strained Patience | October 22, 2007 10:42 AM | Report abuse

Don't think they can touch Dorrance with the lawsuit pending, even if he were interested.

Tracey Leone? Bill Irwin?

Posted by: WNT fan | October 22, 2007 11:01 AM | Report abuse

"But I don't want to turn this into Grammar Insider."

[snark] says, "In the past, schools were rigid in their ruling that sentences could not start with conjunctions, such as 'And' or 'But'. ...Whilst it is acceptable to use 'And' or 'But' to start a sentence, this practice should be limited and only used for effect and impact."

Have there been any talks from the women's league officials since the WWC debacle? I was wondering what's been grinding in the Rumor Mill as far as start time. Did they ever figure out the last city? Sorry for my ignorance of the situation.

Posted by: LeesburgSoccerFan | October 22, 2007 11:18 AM | Report abuse

Lets just pray that Sunil doesnt give him a promotion.....that would be a very US Soccer thing to do.

Happy Trail Greg Ryan, you are worthless.

Posted by: Thank God | October 22, 2007 11:19 AM | Report abuse

maybe i can get hired. how do i submit my resume?

Posted by: craziness | October 22, 2007 11:21 AM | Report abuse

And he's hardly outside of the '99 sphere of influence, given his marriage to UNC/WNT/Hall of Famer Carin Gabarra.

In fact, Carin Gabarra hasn't been involved with the USWNT since 1996 (

Would DiCicco be interested? He quite immediately after the 1999 WWC final because he didn't like the separation from his family in CT. Further, he has been tapped to coach the Boston entry in the new league if it gets off the ground in '09. Shouldn't they be looking for someone who is likely to stay through '11?

Does anyone know what has become of Lauren Gregg? I believe that it was a close call between her and Heinrichs to replace DiCicco eight years ago; some people may argue that that is when things started going downhill.

Posted by: Section 410 | October 22, 2007 11:44 AM | Report abuse

Peter Nowak for WNT coach.

Posted by: Anonymous | October 22, 2007 12:01 PM | Report abuse

Lauren Gregg is in Virginia, working and raising her family. Still involved in soccer as a board memeber on various US boards. She is also a soccer mom now, her child is in my program.

Haven't talked to her since May though.

Posted by: vasco | October 22, 2007 12:04 PM | Report abuse

So uh, not that I don't find Womens soccer TOTALLY interesting, but when can we expect some United News & Notes? Must know about the status of Emilio and Jaime...

Posted by: Anonymous | October 22, 2007 12:11 PM | Report abuse

DiCicco might not want the USWNT job for the long term - but he could be a good fit for the Olympics -- just before the new women's league would start.

[I'm not clear on the calender here -- would Tony be able to do both jobs or would the Boston Breakers need him before the '08 Olympics ? ]

and yes, he's part of that past which I was suggesting we're too focused on ... But he was an excellent coach.

Posted by: Fan w/ Strained Patience | October 22, 2007 12:15 PM | Report abuse

Maybe DC United can hire me. I'd be an excellent goalie coach.

Posted by: Greg Ryan | October 22, 2007 12:15 PM | Report abuse

The problem with many of the names being thrown out is that they assume that this was just about Ryan--that if Heinrichs or Gregg or Gabarra or whomever had been coaching our team would have played fluid, possession-oriented, creative, attacking soccer. And I don't see that. We spend more resources, have almost a full-time program, are more organized than anyone else. But Germany and Brazil are clearly better than us right now (and Brazil is not even a part-time program). Folks, the last 2 WCs, the rep on the USWNT is that we score of restarts or we don't score--we don't break down good teams in the run of play. That's not just at Ryan's feet.

Ryan goofed up badly. But turning to the "usual suspects" (ie: USSF and college candidates) are not necessarily good choices. Likewise going on resume: Ryan's actually isn't bad (former pro player, college coach, WT assistant).

If you buy that the USWNT needs to be more creative, build technical skills, than I think most of the current crowd (Dorrance, DeCicco, Gabarra, etc.) might be popular choices but they're not going to solve the problems. Pia Sundhage might be a good choice b/c she is a woman, has experience coaching the women's game, has been successful with far less resources than the USSF gives our NT coach, and could be a transitional coach (someone who can shift us from English Division III direct soccer to more creative possession and attacking soccer).

Posted by: JoeW | October 22, 2007 12:26 PM | Report abuse


Please, Goff, can we get an update on D.C. United's injuries?!

Posted by: Soy United! | October 22, 2007 12:32 PM | Report abuse

Soy United!,

This isn't DC United Insider, it is Soccer Insider. Just because you aren't interested doesn't mean other people aren't either. There are plenty of previous Goff posts about DC United that you can post to.


I agree that this isn't just a coach problem. I think there is a fundamental problem starting with who is picked for the U14 ODP. It appears that the USSF is constantly picking bigger players with speed instead of smaller players with skill. I hope that changes soon because my daughter is a small 11 year old with excellent skills but she will never be big. Whoever is the new coach, she/he will have to clean house like Anson Dorrance did when he became the USWNT coach. There are quite a few older players that need to be replaced.

Posted by: Pedro Burrito | October 22, 2007 12:42 PM | Report abuse

1. Probably no choice made today, right? Just that they will be interviewing candidates, etc? They run some names up the flagpole, privately or semi-publicly?

2. Re the youth program, I don't think the evidence supports this size/speed over skills bias. First of all, why not develop players with size, speed, AND skills? But more fundamentally, if you look at the line-ups for the U-21 Nordic Cup where US beat the Germans 4-0, there are plenty of midfielders and even a few defenders who are listed in the 5'3" to 5'5" range. Mids from the U-20s in Pan Ams are listed as 5'7" and 5'8". I think the stuff about ODP selection may be true at some state or regional levels, or in some age groups, but if you look at the national age group pools, I think the data shows otherwise. There are plenty of smaller players with wicked talent that are shining on the international youth stage, and W-league too (and WUSA before that). The players are there. It's not all about the coach, but that's a helluva good place to start.

Posted by: WNT fan | October 22, 2007 1:08 PM | Report abuse

"1. Probably no choice made today, right? Just that they will be interviewing candidates, etc? They run some names up the flagpole, privately or semi-publicly?"

They've had enough time to do the legwork for a new coach. If they were going to announce an resignation, they should have done that a couple of weeks ago. The search for a WNT coack shouldn't be a marathon event. If the USSF go with an interim coach (a la Bradley) while trying to find a decent permanent one, we will truly look bush league.

Posted by: LeesburgSoccerFan | October 22, 2007 1:56 PM | Report abuse

Any ideas where I can find the phone number for this teleconference today?
I tried but there's no info on this matter.

Posted by: Helberth | October 22, 2007 3:06 PM | Report abuse

Any ideas where I can find the phone number for this teleconference today?
I tried but there's no info on this matter.

Posted by: Helberth | October 22, 2007 03:06 PM

I imagine that this is essentially a press conference, and thus an invitation-only affair. Goff would know more about it.

Posted by: Section 410 | October 22, 2007 3:09 PM | Report abuse

4:01 Any news yet?

Posted by: I-270, Exit 1 | October 22, 2007 4:01 PM | Report abuse

CHICAGO (October 22, 2007) -- U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati announced today that the contract of U.S. Women's National Team head coach Greg Ryan will not be renewed when it expires at the end of 2007, ending his nearly three-year tenure as the team's head coach.

Posted by: RK | October 22, 2007 4:12 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: silentbob | October 22, 2007 4:22 PM | Report abuse

That's weak. Why not just fire the guy?

Posted by: Bruce Arena | October 22, 2007 4:30 PM | Report abuse

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