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Andonovski officially steps down; Twila Kilgore named USWNT interim coach

New U.S. Soccer sporting director Matt Crocker will lead search for next USWNT head coach

Jenna Watson-USA TODAY Sports

U.S. Soccer confirmed on Thursday that Vlatko Andonovski has stepped down as head coach of the United States women’s national team, as was widely reported on Wednesday. Andonovski’s contract ran through the end of 2023.

Twila Kilgore will serve as interim coach of the team until a new head coach is hired. New U.S. Soccer sporting director Matt Crocker will lead that search, the federation said in a statement.

“It’s been the honor of my life to coach the talented, hard-working players of the USWNT for the past four years,” Andonovski said in a statement. “I’m very optimistic for the future of this program, especially considering all the young players that got opportunities over the past few years who will no doubt be leaders and impact players moving forward. While we are all disappointed by the outcome at this year’s World Cup, I am immensely proud of the progress this team has made, the support they’ve shown for each other, and the inspiration they’ve provided for players around the world. I will be forever thankful to the U.S. Soccer Federation for giving me the chance to coach this remarkable team.”

Kilgore (formerly Kaufman) joined Andonovski’s staff as an assistant coach in February 2022 after previous experience with the Houston Dash, U.S. youth teams, and the college game. In 2021, she became the first American-born woman to earn U.S. Soccer’s Pro Coaching License.

At minimum, Kilgore will be in charge of the team for a pair of friendlies against South Africa on Sept. 21 and 24.

Twila Kilgore (red) will serve as USWNT interim coach. (Jenna Watson-USA TODAY Sports)

Andonovski exits with a 51-5-9 record (W-L-T), but was just 3-2-5 in major tournaments. The U.S.’ exit in the Round of 16 at the 2023 World Cup marked the team’s worst finish in history at a major tournament.

“It’s imperative that we continue to evolve and innovate, and we are excited about the path that lies ahead,” Crocker said. “We understand the challenges and have engaged with stakeholders from various corners of our sport – players, coaches, and other individuals within the soccer landscape. The insights and perspectives gathered during these discussions have been instrumental in shaping our forward-looking plan. Our commitment to excellence remains unshakeable, and we believe this strategic plan will set the foundation for our Women’s National Team to achieve greater heights in the years to come.”

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