US women dump coach as 2015 World Cup looms

Chicago: In a major blow ahead ahead of the 2015 Women`s World Cup in Canada, the United States has fired coach Tom Sermanni as national team coach.

The decision, announced Sunday just hours after a 2-0 home friendly victory over China, sends the 59-year-old Scotsman packing after 16 months in the post.

Sermanni had coached the Australian national women`s team from 2005 to 2012 before taking charge of the Americans last year after Swede Pia Sundhage left to return to her homeland.

Jill Ellis, the US Soccer Federation development director, will serve as interim US coach starting with a Thursday rematch with China at San Diego. She had five wins and two draws in a prior interim stint after Sundhage departed.

"We felt that we needed to go in a different direction at this time," said US Soccer President Sunil Gulati.

"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."