Sarina Wiegman turned down interest from US Soccer in 2019
Sarina Wiegman turned down interest from US Soccer in 2019 when the US federation approached her to discuss their women’s national team coaching vacancy, multiple sources familiar with the situation told Yahoo Sports.
Wiegman, who is currently preparing to coach England in Sunday’s Women’s World Cup final against Spain, has been publicly announced as a candidate to fill the USWNT’s last vacant post after head coach Vlatko Andonovski resign this week.
But last time, during USA Soccer’s search to replace USWNT coach Jill Ellis, Wiegman was not interested, the sources said.
She was the head coach of the Dutch women’s national team at the time, contracted through the Tokyo Olympics, originally slated for July 2020.
And she lived in the Netherlands, where she had spent most of her life, with her husband and two daughters. The US operation would have to move stateside, possibly to Chicago (where US Soccer is headquartered), in late 2019.
Ellis retired in October 2019, a few months after winning a second consecutive World Cup title. The US Soccer investigation began in August 2019, and concluded in late October with Andonovski’s hiring.
The Olympics were eventually postponed until 2021 amid the COVID-19 pandemic. In 2020, Wiegman was interviewed by England, and they agreed to a deal that would allow her to take control of the Lionesses after the Olympics, in September 2021.
She continued to coach the Netherlands through August 2021, losing in an Olympic quarter-final penalty shootout to the USWNT. She then took over as England coach and, 10 months later, led the Lionesses to their first European Championship on home soil. A year later, she has them in her first World Cup final (Sunday, 6am, Fox).
One day after their semifinal victory, US Soccer announced that Andonovski had resigned as USWNT coach after the team’s round of 16. Among the fans and the US media, there was talk of possible candidates for his immediate place around Wiegman.
Wiegman, however, is under contract again, this time with England through 2025. Hours after news of Andonovski’s resignation broke, even before US Soccer’s announcement, the Football Association CEO spoke out England’s Mark Bullingham told reporters in Sydney, and said that the FA would “100%” reject any approaches to Wiegman.
“We’ve seen a lot of rumours, and look, she’s a special talent. We know that,” Bullingham said. “From our side, she has a contract through to 2025. We think she is doing a good job. We are big supporters of her and hope she feels the same way. So she is someone we would like to have with us for a long time. “
On Friday, Wiegman addressed the speculation. “I have a contract until 2025,” she said. “I really enjoy my job and I feel that people like me are still doing the job. I have no plans to leave.”