FOX 26 Sports has learned the expansion Houston Dash, in the National Women's Soccer League, have hired Tony DiCicco, who had unprecedented success as head coach of the United States Women's National Team, as a consultant for the franchise.
DiCicco will assist the team in finding its first head coach and in assembling the roster through the college and expansion draft, along with other signings.
DiCicco won an incredible 90 percent of his matches as head coach of the USWNT from 1994-1999.
He led the U.S. women's Olympic team to the gold medal in 1996, and three years later led the USWNT to the World Cup championship with a victory over China.
DiCicco, who had initially been a candidate to become the Dash's first head coach, was 103-8-8 as national team coach.
He was elected to the National Soccer Hall of Fame in 2012.
DiCicco currently works for ESPN and handles soccer clinics and camps through his company SoccerPlus.
Below is the release from the Houston Dash.
Houston Dash hire Tony DiCicco in a consulting role
Former USWNT head coach will assist in coaching search and preliminary roster construction
HOUSTON (Friday, December 27, 2013) – The Houston Dash have hired former U.S. women's national team head coach Tony DiCicco as a consultant, the club announced today.
DiCicco, 65, will assist Dash managing director Brian Ching and team president Chris Canetti in their search for a head coach and help build the roster for the team's inaugural season through an expansion draft (date TBD) and the NWSL College Draft on Jan. 17.
"I am excited about the opportunity to consult for the Houston Dash and work with Chris Canetti and Brian Ching while they interview for a coach and build a roster," said DiCicco. "The Dash are creating an excellent situation for players to train and play and I have been very impressed with how the Houston Dynamo organization is behind the Dash playing in the NWSL."
The Wethersfield, Conn., native was head coach of the U.S. women's national team from 1994-1999, leading the team to a gold medal at the 1996 Olympics and winning the 1999 FIFA Women's World Cup. He compiled a 103-8-8 record during his time at the helm, giving him the most wins in national team history.
DiCicco also led the U.S. U-20 women's national team to a championship at the 2008 FIFA Women's U-20 World Cup and coached the Boston Breakers from 2009-2011 in the now-defunct Women's Professional Soccer. He was inducted to the National Soccer Hall of Fame in 2012.
"We are very excited to have Tony on board to help us through this process," said Ching. "When you think of women's soccer at the highest levels there are very few, if any, that have as much experience or success as Tony."
Season tickets are on sale now for the Dash's inaugural season in the NWSL. To purchase a package or for more information on 2014 season tickets, fans can visit www.HoustonDashSoccer.com/tickets or call 713-276-GOAL.
ABOUT THE HOUSTON DASH
The Houston Dash are a National Women's Soccer League club that will begin play in April 2014 for the start of the league's second season. The Dash are the first expansion club in the NWSL, joining the eight original members that launched the league in 2013. The NWSL is supported by the Canadian Soccer Association, Federation of Mexican Football and the United States Soccer Federation. It is the top-flight women's professional soccer league in North America, featuring many of the top players from the United States, Canada and Mexico, as well as talent from around the world. The 24-game regular season runs from April through August. The team trains at Houston Sports Park (HSP), the premier training facility in Southeast Texas, and plays at BBVA Compass Stadium in downtown Houston. For more information, visit www.HoustonDynamo.com/HoustonDash or call (713) 276-GOAL.