Written by Oluwaseun Oyediji
United States of America (USA) National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL) team, Racing Louisville FC has appointed Beverly “Bev” Goebel Yanez as its head coach, the club announced Thursday following an exhaustive month-long search that included candidates from across the globe.
The 35-year-old Yanez, who spent this past season as an assistant coach with Racing, emerged as the top choice after a series of interviews and presentations with the club’s various stakeholders, completing her rapid rise to a head coaching position four years after retiring as a player.
“I am incredibly excited for the opportunity to lead this group,” said Yanez (whose last name is pronounced “Yawn-ez”).
“I am honored to be a part of this club and grateful to immerse myself in this amazing community. I have said it before and I truly believe it: This group is special in several aspects, and I look forward to the start of the 2024 season!”
“We could not be more excited for Bev to lead Racing Louisville into the future,” said Racing general manager Ryan Dell. “During her time in Louisville this past season and throughout the interview process, we have seen how dedicated, tactically sound, and innovative she is. Bev’s commitment to development and her NWSL experience stood out in the search process, and in every conversation we had about this role, her immense potential was clear. She can be a championship-winning coach at Racing Louisville, and she embodies what we want in a head coach both on and off the pitch.”
A former standout player for the Seattle-based club now known as OL Reign, Yanez worked three years in the National Women’s Soccer League as an assistant coach after retiring, spending two seasons with NJ/NY Gotham FC before moving to Louisville in 2023.
She helped Racing reach this year’s UKG NWSL Challenge Cup final and helped lead Gotham’s run to the 2021 Challenge Cup final and the 2021 NWSL Playoffs.
Yanez has also worked as a coach in the youth soccer ranks, including stints with the U-15 U.S. Soccer Youth National Team and the OL Reign academy as well as the Juventus Academy and COPA Soccer Training Center in California.
Racing Louisville FC announced several roster moves before the National Women’s Soccer League’s end-of-season process.
Forwards Jess McDonald and Nadia Nadim are unrestricted free agents and will not re-sign with Racing Louisville. The club waived midfielder Alex Chidiac and defender Rebecca Holloway as their contracts expire, making their playing rights for 2024 and beyond available to other NWSL teams. Midfielder Taylor Aylmer is a restricted free agent through the end of her contract on December 31.
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Racing remains in contract discussions with three others who have expiring deals – goalkeeper Olivia Sekany and forwards Parker Goins and Wang Shuang.
The end-of-season roster status update comes after Racing previously announced the departure of forward Emina Ekic, who signed as a free agent with Australian club Melbourne City, and three weeks ahead of the 2023 NWSL Expansion Draft set for December 15.
In September, Racing exercised the 2024 options on the contracts of forwards Thembi Kgatlana and Kirsten Davis and defender Julia Lester. Midfielder Maddie Pokorny also signed a new contract through 2025, while goalkeepers Hillary Beall and Jordyn Bloomer inked new deals through 2024 with options for 2025.
Racing Louisville FC’s current roster:
Goalkeepers (4): Hillary Beall*, Jordyn Bloomer, Katie Lund, Olivia Sekany^
Defenders (5): Abby Erceg, Julia Lester, Lauren Milliet, Elli Pikkujämsä, Carson Pickett
Midfielders (7): Jordan Baggett, Ary Borges, Savannah DeMelo, Kayla Fischer, Jaelin Howell, Maddie Pokorny, Wang Shuang^
Forwards (5): Kirsten Davis, Parker Goins^, Uchenna Kanu, Thembi Kgatlana, Paige Monaghan
* Hillary Beall (Western United) is on loan in Australia – the regular season ends March 30, 2024.
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