USWNT coach search in final stages with trio of candidates - sources

The search for the next manager of the U.S. women's national team has reached its final stages, with sources confirming to ESPN that Australia women's coach Tony Gustavsson, Juventus women's boss Joe Montemurro and OL Reign manager Laura Harvey are among the finalists.

The Athletic was the first to report the news. The U.S. Soccer Federation declined to comment.

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The USWNT job has been open since Aug. 17, when Vlatko Andonovski resigned in the wake of the USWNT's round of 16 exit at the 2023 Women's World Cup, its worst-ever finish at the tournament in the program's history.

At a roundtable with reporters last month, U.S. Soccer sporting director Matt Crocker, who is leading the search, said he was "really excited" by the pool of candidates, and that the federation remains on track to complete the search in time for a pair of friendlies against China in early December.

"I'm excited by the quality and caliber of candidates that we've attracted already," Crocker said. He later added: "Looking at the candidates that we are in lockstep and in detailed discussions with, I'm really confident that we can get the right candidate to take this forward."

Both Gustavsson and Harvey have previous ties to the U.S. program.

Gustavsson was an assistant to Jill Ellis during the Americans' successful run to the 2015 and 2019 World Cup titles, and previously served under former U.S. manager Pia Sundhage. Harvey was manager of the U.S. U-20 women's national team from 2020-21, during which she also served as an assistant coach to previous manager Vlatko Andonovski.

Gustavsson, 50, has led Australia since 2020, a period in which he guided the Matildas to fourth-place finishes at the Tokyo Olympics and the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup, the latter of which was co-hosted by Australia.

At club level, he managed now-defunct Swedish side Tyreso from 2012-14, and claimed the 2014 UEFA Women's Champions League.

One source confirmed reporting from The Athletic that it may be difficult to convince Gustavsson to sign with the U.S. Soccer Federation, with questions arising over whether the new manager would be expected to live in the U.S. full-time.

Harvey is in her second stint with OL Reign, having returned there in 2021 after coaching what was then known as the Seattle Reign FC from 2013-17. She also coached the Utah Royals from 2018-19.

The English manager is a three-time NWSL Coach of the Year, having won the award in 2014, 2015 and 2021. Her teams are three-time winners of the NWSL Shield, emblematic of the team with the best regular season record. Harvey also has overseas experience having managed Arsenal in the English Women's Super League, and winning league and cup doubles in 2011 and 2012.

Montemurro, 54, is Australian-born, and raised his coaching profile in his native country, first with Melbourne Victory and later with Melbourne City. He has been managing in Europe for the last six years, first with Arsenal Women from 2017-2021, where he won the Women's Super League crown in 2018-19 and the FA Women's Cup in 2017-18.

He took over Juventus Women starting in 2021, winning a treble of league, cup, and Super Cup titles in his inaugural campaign.