Emma Hayes

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Emma Hayes
12. Emma Hayes (21964566975) (cropped).jpg
Hayes with Chelsea F.C. Women in 2015
Personal information
Date of birth (1976-10-18) 18 October 1976 (age 45)
Place of birth Camden, London, England
Club information
Current team
Chelsea F.C. Women (manager)
Teams managed
Years Team
2001–2003 Long Island Lady Riders
2003–2006 Iona College
2006–2008 Arsenal Ladies (assistant)
2008–2010 Chicago Red Stars
2012– Chelsea Women

Emma Hayes MBE (born 18 October 1976) is an English professional football manager. She is currently the manager of FA WSL club Chelsea Women.[1] She previously served as the head coach and director of football operations for Chicago Red Stars[2] of Women's Professional Soccer in the United States from 2008 until 24 May 2010.[3]


Hayes was born in Camden, London, and attended Parliament Hill School.[4] She then studied at Liverpool Hope University, graduating in 1999. She was formerly manager of the Long Island Lady Riders between 2001 and 2003, head women's football coach at Iona College in New Rochelle between 2003 and 2006, and first team assistant coach and academy director for Arsenal Ladies between 2006 and 2008.

Hayes joined Chicago Red Stars as a manager in 2008. After she was sacked in 2010, she took up a technical director role at Western New York Flash and advised them on transfers, helping to create a team that won the 2011 Women's Professional Soccer championship. After another stint as a consultant for Washington Freedom, Hayes returned to London and worked for the family business, Covent Garden FX, a currency exchange.[5]

In August 2012, Hayes landed the Chelsea FC Women job[5] replacing Liverpool-bound Matt Beard.

2015 season[edit]

After narrowly missing out on the 2014 FA WSL 1 title on the final day, Hayes oversaw a huge squad overhaul that bore witness to the addition of several arrivals. Swedish shot-stopper Hedvig Lindahl and promising England centre-half Millie Bright among the new recruits.[6][7] Marija Banusic, Gemma Davison and Niamh Fahey also joined Chelsea, signing from Kristianstads, Liverpool Ladies and Arsenal Ladies respectively.[8][9][10] Later on in the season, Hayes won the race for Reading & England forward Fran Kirby for a British record fee.[11] With the agonising memories of final-day defeat still fresh in memory, Hayes guided her side to an historic league and cup double, edging the FA Cup Final thanks to a lone strike from Ji So-yun late on in the first half.[12] Later on in the season, they avenged themselves by winning The FA WSL 1 title, after hammering Sunderland at home 4–0 to secure the trophy.[13]

"[Hayes] built everything at Chelsea – from having the kit washed to having food, to having our own building, to having our own training and pitches. Now, it’s an absolute professional setup but everything's been a fight over the years to do that."

Katie Chapman, who played under Hayes at three different clubs, credits her with building Chelsea from the ground-up.[5]

In the Women's Champions League, Hayes' side reached the last 16 after defeating Glasgow City. After their 2–1 home defeat by VfL Wolfsburg, Hayes criticised The Football Association for poor fixture scheduling, insisting that the competition is "geared to French, German and Swedish teams, and until we change that or listen to clubs like Chelsea we are always going to get knocked out in the early rounds".[14]

2016 season[edit]

Hayes' side finished second in The FA WSL 1, five points adrift of Champions Manchester City.[15] The Blues also reached the FA Cup Final for the second consecutive year, losing 1–0 to a strong Arsenal side.[16]

Hayes was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in the 2016 Birthday Honours for services to football.[17]

2017 season[edit]

Aided with addition of new players including Ramona Bachmann, Maren Mjelde, Erin Cuthbert and Crystal Dunn, Emma Hayes guided her side to finish top, in a reorganised FA WSL1, on goal difference.

The team also played the FA Cup competitions and reached the semi-final but were knocked out by Birmingham City in a penalty shoot-out.[18]

2020 season[edit]

Hayes sought to rebuilt the team at the conclusion of the 2017–18 season around new recruits Sam Kerr, Pernille Harder, Melanie Leupolz, Magda Eriksson, and Ann Katrin Berger having moved on some key first-team players. The 2019–20 and 2020–21 season saw her team win back-to-back WSL titles[19] in what were recording breaking years,[20] following a trophy-less 2018–19 campaign.[19] Given Chelsea's dominance in the 2020–21 season in both Europe and England,[21] some observers[weasel words] hailed them as one of the best teams ever.[19][22] Hayes became the first woman manager to reach the Champions League final in 12 years.[23] On 16 May, her Chelsea team, also playing their first-ever Champions League final, lost 4–0 to Barcelona Femeni.[24]

Hayes won the 2020–21 FA WSL Manager of the Year award.[25] Two months later, she signed a new long-term contract with Chelsea.[26]

Managerial statistics[edit]

All competitive league, cup and European games are included.

As of 18 November 2021 [27][28]
Team Nat Year Record
G W D L Win %
Chicago Red Stars  United States 2008–2010 26 6 14 6 023.08
Chelsea F.C. Women  England 2012– 233 159 30 44 068.24
Career total 259 165 44 50 063.71

Managerial honours[edit]

Chelsea Women

Personal life[edit]

Hayes joined Arsenal's academy but a career-ending ankle injury while on a ski trip when she was 17 cut-short her playing career. With football ruled out, Hayes took European Studies, Spanish, and Sociology at Liverpool Hope college and later a Masters degree in Intelligence and International Affairs.[5]

In 2018, Hayes was pregnant with twins, but lost one of them, Albie, 28 weeks in.[5] She gave birth to the surviving twin, Harry,[5] on 17 May 2018.[29][30]

Hayes credits Vic Akers, former Arsenal Women FC manager under whom she was part of the backroom staff when they won an unprecedented quadruple in the 2006–07 season, for being a "massive" influence on her career.[31] Speaking of her experience coaching in the United States she said though she was born in England, she was definitely made in America.[32]

Chelsea forward Fran Kirby, who suffered from severe depression after the loss of her mother early in her life and from a career-threatening illness in her late 20s, is particularly close to Hayes. Speaking of Hayes' positive influence in her life she said, "Emma's been incredible. She's been my rock; the person who made sure I was protected from everything."[33]


  1. ^ "HAYES APPOINTED AS NEW WOMEN MANAGER". Archived from the original on 19 January 2013.
  2. ^ "Coaches". Women's Professional Soccer. Archived from the original on 25 July 2008.
  3. ^ "Emma Hayes released from coaching duties; Red Stars defeat FC Gold Pride 1-0". Red Star's Confidential.
  4. ^ Barnett, Steve (27 May 2021). "Top boss: Hayes scoops third trophy to round off campaign". Islington Tribune.
  5. ^ a b c d e f Wrack, Suzzane (14 May 2021). "'She has a skill you can't buy': the making of Chelsea's Emma Hayes". The Guardian. United Kingdom. Archived from the original on 14 May 2021.
  6. ^ "New goalkeeper added to Ladies squad | Official Site | Chelsea Football Club". ChelseaFC. Retrieved 3 May 2021.
  7. ^ "Bright signs for Chelsea Ladies". BBC Sport. Retrieved 3 May 2021.
  8. ^ "Chelsea Ladies sign striker Banusic". BBC Sport. Retrieved 3 May 2021.
  9. ^ "Ladies Announce New Arrival". 20 December 2014. Archived from the original on 20 December 2014. Retrieved 3 May 2021.
  10. ^ "Ladies sign new defender | Official Site | Chelsea Football Club". ChelseaFC. Retrieved 3 May 2021.
  11. ^ "Chelsea Ladies sign Fran Kirby for British record fee". SkySports. Retrieved 3 May 2021.
  12. ^ Association, The Football. "Chelsea see off County to win SSE Women's FA Cup Final". www.thefa.com. Retrieved 3 May 2021.
  13. ^ "League Tables". womenscompetitions.thefa.com. Retrieved 3 May 2021.
  14. ^ "Champions League: Chelsea Ladies 1-2 Wolfsburg Ladies". BBC Sport. 11 November 2015. Retrieved 8 May 2018.
  15. ^ "League Tables". womenscompetitions.thefa.com. Retrieved 3 May 2021.
  16. ^ "Arsenal Ladies 1-0 Chelsea Ladies". BBC Sport. Retrieved 3 May 2021.
  17. ^ "No. 61608". The London Gazette (Supplement). 11 June 2016. p. B19.
  18. ^ "Birmingham City Ladies 1-1 Chelsea Ladies (4-2 after penalties)". BBC Sport. Retrieved 3 May 2021.
  19. ^ a b c Wrack, Suzzane (10 May 2021). "How Emma Hayes turned Chelsea from also-rans to all-conquerors". The Guardian. Archived from the original on 10 May 2021.
  20. ^ Marsh, Charlotte (9 May 2021). "Chelsea Women win 2020/21 Women's Super League title with Man City Women second, Bristol City Women relegated". Sky Sports. Archived from the original on 10 May 2021.
  21. ^ ""My dreams came true today" - Hayes delighted with stunning Chelsea victory". Her Football Hub. 3 May 2021. Retrieved 19 May 2021.
  22. ^ "Aluko: 'Relentless' Chelsea the best team in the world". Sky Sports. 10 May 2021. Archived from the original on 10 May 2021.
  23. ^ Burhan, Asif (1 May 2021). "Emma Hayes Attempts To Become First Female Coach In 12 Years To Reach Champions League Final". SportsMoney. Archived from the original on 24 May 2021 – via Forbes.
  24. ^ "Barcelona beats Chelsea 4-0 to win Women's Champions League final for first time". Gothenburg. Associated Press. 17 May 2021. Archived from the original on 24 May 2021 – via The Hindu.
  25. ^ Pasztor, David (25 May 2021). "Emma Hayes, Fran Kirby win 2020-21 WSL Manager, Player of the Season awards". SB Nation. Archived from the original on 25 May 2021.
  26. ^ "Emma Hayes: Chelsea manager extends contract at Women's Super League champions". BBC Sport. 2 July 2021. Retrieved 3 July 2021.
  27. ^ "Emma Hayes Stats - Chelsea Women Manager | FootyStats". footystats.org. Retrieved 3 May 2021.
  28. ^ "Red Stars relieve Hayes of duties | Espn". espn.com. Retrieved 11 June 2021.
  29. ^ "Emma Hayes: Chelsea Ladies manager gives birth to boy". BBC Sport. 17 May 2018. Archived from the original on 16 May 2021.
  30. ^ "Emma Hayes gives birth". chelseafc.com. 17 May 2018. Archived from the original on 16 May 2021.
  31. ^ Kerai, Husmukh (7 May 2021). "Emma Hayes: Chelsea boss says winning is in the DNA of the club after historic week for men and women's teams". Sky Sports. Archived from the original on 7 May 2021.
  32. ^ "Emma Hayes' psychological methods keep Chelsea women flying high". The Hindu. Associated Press. 13 May 2021. Archived from the original on 24 May 2021 – via SportStar.
  33. ^ Taylor, Louise (5 September 2020). "Fran Kirby: 'The cardiologist said if I didn't slow down, I wouldn't play again'". The Guardian. Archived from the original on 10 May 2021.