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Report: Kate Markgraf the frontrunner to be named USWNT general manager

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She would be the first GM in the USWNT program’s history.

International Champions Cup Launch Event - Day 3 Photo by Mike Stobe/International Champions Cup/Getty Images

On the heels of United States Women’s National Team head coach Jill Ellis announcing the end of her tenure yesterday, U.S. Soccer seems poised to hire the person that will be responsible for finding her replacement. According to Steven Goff of the Washington Post, former USWNT defender and current ESPN commentator Kate Markgraf is the “clear front-runner” to become the program’s first general manager.

Markgraf, who was a starter for the USWNT during the 1999 Women’s World Cup, had 201 caps for the national team over a 12-year career. She also was a member of the 2003 and 2007 World Cup teams as well as the team that competed in the 2000, 2004, and 2008 Olympics. She is currently a commentator for ESPN and has also done broadcasting for Fox Sports, NBC Sports, and the Big Ten Network since 2011.

If Markgraf is indeed the hire by U.S. Soccer for the newly created general manager position, her first task will be to find a replacement for exiting head coach Jill Ellis, who announced yesterday that she would be leaving the program after the completion of the Victory Tour. The USWNT general manager search has not been as high profile as the process was for the USMNT, who eventually hired Earnie Stewart to assume that role. With the USWNT coming off back-to-back Women’s World Cup titles and preparing to compete in the 2020 Olympics, there will still be a lot for the general manager to do to keep the program the world’s best. It sounds like Kate Markgraf is U.S. Soccer’s choice to lead that transition.

Thoughts on Kate Markgraf as the next USWNT general manager?