USWNT fires coach Sermanni, Ellis takes over in the interim

Sermanni became USA manager on January 1, 2013.

Geoff Burke/Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

U.S. Soccer announced on Sunday night that Tom Sermanni has been relieved of his duties as head coach of the US women’s team, effective immediately.

The announcement came just hours after the USA defeated China 2-0 in a friendly in Commerce City, Colo.

"We want to thank Tom for his service over the past year and half, but we felt that we needed to go in a different direction at this time," said U.S. Soccer president Sunil Gulati in a statement. "We will begin looking for a new coach immediately to guide our Women’s National Team toward qualifying for the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup."

Sermanni took over the USA on January 1, 2013 after Pia Sundhage left to coach Sweden’s women’s national team. He led the team to a 13-0-3 record in 2013.

But 2014 started poorly. Sermanni led the USA to one win in four matches and a seventh place finish at the Algarve Cup last month. It turns out not even a win over China could save his job.

"I’m disappointed that things didn’t work out, but I’d like to thank U.S. Soccer for the opportunity to have coached this team and also the staff and players for all their hard work," said Sermanni.

U.S. Soccer director of development Jill Ellis will serve as interim head coach, starting with the USA’s next match against China on April 10th in San Diego.

Ellis previously served as interim head coach for seven matches at the end of 2012, going 5-0-2.