Kate Markgraf has been named the first general manager of the U.S. Women’s National Team.
U.S. Soccer announced the move on Monday. The 42-year-old Markgraf won 201 caps as a player with the USWNT over a 12-year career, which saw her participate in two World Cups and two Olympics.
“We’re thrilled to have Kate as the first General Manager of our Women’s National Team,” U.S. Soccer Federation President Carlos Cordeiro said. “Having won multiple championships, she’s truly steeped in the culture of the program. At a time when more countries around the world are investing heavily in women’s soccer and competition is getting more intense, Kate will help ensure that we achieve excellence across all our women’s teams and programs, both at the Federation and across the United States.”
Since her retirement, Markgraf became a commentator for ESPN and has also appeared on Fox Sports, NBC Sports, and the Big Ten Channel. She also was an assistant coach with Marquette University.
Markgraf’s first task will be to find a replacement for USWNT head coach Jill Ellis, who is leaving her position following the upcoming Victory Tour for the World Cup winners.
“This new role presents some big challenges, but all are exciting, important to the future of the game and certainly energizing,” Markgraf said. “I’m honored to come back to an organization and program that I love, one which helped mold me as a player and person, and to contribute to its continued growth. To reach the top of the world is difficult enough, but to stay there takes a tremendous amount of hard work by players, coaches, staff and administrators, and I’m looking forward to collaborating with those inside and outside of U.S. Soccer to make that happen.”
Several options have been mentioned with the head coaching job including Paul Riley of the NWSL’s North Carolina Courage, Reign FC head coach Vlatko Andonovski, Utah Royals and former U.S. U-23 WNT head coach Laura Harvey, and Florida State’s Mark Krikorian.
The USWNT continues its Victory Tour against Portugal on Aug. 29th and Sept. 3rd respectively, before facing South Korea on Oct. 3rd and 6th.