US start Hayes' reign with 4-0 thrashing of South Korea

The United States women’s team convincingly defeated South Korea 4-0 in a pre-Olympics friendly match, marking Emma Hayes’ debut as coach of a team determined to bounce back from recent setbacks.

A capacity crowd in Commerce City, Colorado had the opportunity to witness Hayes in action as her team took the lead in the 34th minute, courtesy of Mallory Swanson’s goal from a well-executed pass by Sophia Smith. As the game progressed, the American team grew in confidence, with defender Tierna Davidson extending their lead just four minutes later from a set-piece, and then adding a header early in the second half.

Swanson sealed the victory with another goal in the 74th minute. Hayes, known for her animated personality, appeared positive and energetic as she provided instructions to her players. Having been appointed as coach in November, Hayes joined the U.S. team in a full-time capacity only last month after securing her seventh WSL title with Chelsea Football Club.

The 47-year-old coach, who has expressed her commitment to preserving the team’s “American DNA,” now leads a motivated squad eager to move past their disappointing performance in last year’s World Cup.

With less than two months remaining until the Olympic campaign begins in Paris, the four-time gold medallists are set to face Zambia. Despite having limited time to familiarize herself with the team, Hayes has demonstrated her ability to lead them to victory. Additionally, the U.S. team is scheduled to play against South Korea once again on Tuesday, this time in St. Paul, Minnesota.

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