- Date of Birth:
- February 13, 1960
Pia Sundhage (born Pia Mariane Sundhage on February 13, 1960 in Ulricehamn, Sweden) is a former professional soccer player and current soccer coach. Pia played with the Ulricehamn International Soccer Club as a youth player, before moving to Falkopings in 1978. Pia made her first appearance with the Swedish National Team as a fifteen year old in 1975. By the time of her last appearance in 1996, she had scored and impressive 71 goals. With Team Sweden, she placed third in the 1991 and 1995 World Cups. Pia began her coaching career as a player/coach in 1992. She was an assistant coach to teams Vallentuna BK and AIK Footboll Dam, before moving to the US in 2000 to help coach the WUSA’s Philadelphia Charge. She took a job as head coach for the Boston Breakers, willing the WUSA title in 2003. When the WUSA closed, Pia returned to Scandinavia to take on further coaching positions. She returned to the US in 2007, when she was named the head coach of the United States Women’s National Team, managing such players like Abby Wambach and Hope Solo. She led Team USA to two Olympic gold medals and an appearance at the 2011 Women’s World Cup final. She resigned from the position in 2012, returning to her homeland. That year, she was named the head coach of the Swedish national team.
Best Known For:
Pia Sundhage is best known as a former professional soccer player and soccer coach, having managed both the US Women’s National Team and Team Sweden.
Pia plays guitar and is a noted singer, known for singing popular songs to her teams and at press conferences. Pia is openly gay. In a 2010 Swedish TV interview, she said she never faced any homophobia as a coach.