Chicago, Ill. (February 18, 2022) – The Chicago Red Stars today announced Chris Petrucelli as the new Head Coach of the club. Petrucelli joins the Red Stars from Southern Methodist University where he was the head coach for nine seasons.
“We are excited to start a new chapter for the club with Chris as our head coach. The importance of this hire is immeasurable. That is why I am incredibly proud that several of our players played an integral role as key members of the search committee. Everyone in the organization is eager to start the 2022 season and bring a championship home to Chicago,” said Vicky Lynch, the Red Stars’ Chief Business Officer.
Petrucelli is a two-time National Coach of The Year award winner and an NCAA Championship Coach. In 31 years, Petrucelli compiled a 427-182-54 record giving him the seventh highest winning percentage among Division I coaches and ranks seventh overall in victories among Division I women’s soccer coaches. In 1995 Petrucelli led the University of Notre Dame women’s soccer team to a NCAA national title.
“I am thrilled to be appointed the Head Coach of the Chicago Red stars. I’m so fortunate to be taking over a team that is extremely talented and hungry for a Championship,” said Petrucelli. “Being graced with the opportunity to work with some of the best players in the world is a position any coach would jump at. I know there’s work to do. I’m excited to get started helping the team accomplish their goals while fostering an environment of joy and positivity.”
The 59-year-old coach started his career in 1984 as an assistant coach for Old Dominion University men’s soccer team and spent time coaching at Notre Dame and University of Texas-Austin, on the collegiate level. Nationally, Petrucelli coached the under-21 and under-19 United States Women’s National Teams. Since 2013 Petrucelli has served as a scout and training center coach for the United States Soccer Federation (USSF). The New Jersey native holds a USSF A coaching license and a National Soccer Coaches Association of America Advanced National Diploma. As a player Petrucelli helped lead the University of North Carolina-Greensboro to two Division III titles in 1982 and 1983. As a senior he was named co-captain of the team.
The Red Stars’ search for a new head coach was led by a committee that included stakeholders from all levels of the organization. The search committee prioritized candidates that could help the club foster a safe environment for all, and also build on the team’s success over the years.
The search committee included:
Red Stars players
Chief Business Officer
Members of the club’s ownership
Over two dozen highly qualified and diverse candidates proactively reached out to the club, highlighting the strong appeal of coaching the Red Stars’ championship caliber roster and the legacy of winning. The search committee also created a list of candidates that the club contacted to include in the process. The overall candidate list featured coaches with a wide diversity of backgrounds and experience from various countries, with national teams, from collegiate teams and men’s and women’s professional club coaching.