X reacts to San Diego Wave's shock sacking of Casey Stoney

  • NWSL side fire ex-Man Utd head coach mid-season
  • Stoney only signed a new deal with the club in January
  • Sudden exit has received backlash from the football world
Casey Stoney has been sacked mid-season by San Diego Wave
Casey Stoney has been sacked mid-season by San Diego Wave / Ira L. Black - Corbis/GettyImages

Despite leading NWSL side San Diego Wave to their first two trophies to date, Casey Stoney found herself dismissed on Monday, midway through the 2024 season.

The former Manchester United head coach travelled across the pond and was named leader of newly formed Wave in 2021. She got off to a flying start, and made history in her first season, becoming the only coach to lead an NWSL expansion club to the playoffs in its inaugural season. 

The team later went on to win the 2023 NWSL Shield in their second year, which is an award presented to the club with the most points throughout the league's regular season. 

However, Stoney struggled to sustain her levels of success, and this season Wave have experienced a few bumps in the road. Prompting the decision to let her go, the team have gone seven games without a win and have won only three of their last 14 games. 

Understandably, news of Stoney’s departure didn’t go down well on X, with many branding the decision unfair considering her achievements, as well as criticising the club for not giving her adequate time to turn things around. 

What's even more shocking is that Stoney only signed a new long-term deal in January, which should have seen her stay at the club until 2027. It included a mutual option to extend to 2028. 

Stoney has said she is "broken" by the news, and in a post on X, thanked the fans for their support.

"In time I will be proud of what we all achieved together," she said.

In a statement released by the club, Wave president Jill Ellis thanked her for her commitment and "the positive impact she has had both on and off the pitch".

She added: "Over the past seasons, Casey has guided us to significant milestones, and her contributions have been instrumental in laying a strong foundation on which to build. The decision to part ways was very hard and not made in haste, but given the ambition of this club, and where we are in our season, we felt a change was necessary at this time."

Many have been quick to suggest Stoney should make a return to England's Women's Super League to fill one of the vacancies at either Brighton & Hove Albion, Leicester or Aston Villa. Considering her experience at Manchester United, there were also murmurs of Stoney expressing an interest for Emma Hayes' since filled role at Chelsea when she announced her departure.

Either way, Stoney won't be short of offers and there's a chance that Wave may end up wishing they'd given her more of a chance as there's no doubt she's likely to excel wherever she ends up.