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USWNT Sep 04, 2020

U.S. Soccer hires new Head of Performance and Sports Scientist for USWNT

CHICAGO – Ellie Maybury has been named the Head of Performance for the U.S. Women’s National Team while Julian Haigh has been named the USWNT Sports Scientist.

Maybury and Haigh, who have been overseeing the USWNT’s fitness since the latter part of 2019, will now be full-time members of U.S. head coach Vlatko Andonovski’s staff.

Maybury will be responsible for creating and executing the overall day-to-day sport science and performance plan for the USWNT, which includes the athletic development of players, optimal preparation of players for competition, monitoring of players’ training/match loads, maintaining optimal recoveries for post-training/competition, injury prevention strategies, nutritional strategies and prescription of strength and conditioning training programs.

Haigh will assist Maybury in all aspects of the sports science and performance for the USWNT.

“Ellie and Julian are highly-motivated professionals with a passion for sports science and both have several years of experience working their way up through our Youth National Teams and the NWSL, respectively,” said U.S. WNT general manager Kate Markgraf. “The physical training and monitoring of our players is tremendously important to how we play and paramount to maintaining our players’ health and well-being; especially coming out of the pandemic when most of the players will have played significantly less games at the club and international level. With their individual and collective experience, they are vital in navigating the physical needs of our players to compete for world titles. We are privileged to add Ellie and Julian as full-time members of the senior National Team staff.”

Maybury joined U.S. Soccer full time in January of 2016 as the lead sport scientist for all of the Youth Women’s National Teams, overseeing the sports science and physiological aspects of the USA’s eight youth teams with specific emphasis on the U-17 and U-20 WNTs during their World Cup cycles.

In 2016, she was with the U.S. teams for both the FIFA Under-17 Women’s World Cup in Jordan and the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Papua New Guinea, and in 2018 she was on the staff for the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup in Uruguay.

Maybury has a BSc (Hons) in Sport Science and Materials Technology from the University of Birmingham and an MSc in Exercise Physiology from Loughborough University. She is currently working on developing her research portfolio in order to enhance her applied skills of working with female youth and senior players at the elite level. Maybury is also a certified paramedic in England and worked as a paramedic for two years in the West Midlands.

Additionally, Maybury is an AAAS IF/THEN® Ambassador, one of 125 women selected nationwide from a variety of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics careers and brought together to serve as high-profile role models for young girls. U.S. Soccer is a partner of IF/THEN, an initiative of Lyda Hill Philanthropies, promoting and supporting women in STEM roles who directly impact U.S. Soccer’s ability to develop world-class players within the U.S. National Team program.

Haigh has served three years working for U.S. Soccer as a sports scientist, overseeing all the NWSL clubs as well as the U.S. Under-23 Women’s National Team while helping gather and analyze fitness and performance data of every player in the pro league. He will continue in his role working with the NWSL and sports scientists for the clubs while also working with Maybury and the USWNT.

Prior to coming to U.S. Soccer, Haigh worked a season and half in the NWSL as the sports scientist for the Boston Breakers. Before that, he worked five seasons in sports science and strength and conditioning with the Widnes Vikings in England’s professional rugby Super League.

Haigh graduated from Liverpool John Moores University with a degree in sports and exercise science before going on to complete his Master’s at LJMU, also in sport and exercise science. He also did an internship at Everton Football Club in the English Premier League and worked briefly with the Liverpool Ladies Football Club.

Haigh was born in Boston, Mass., before moving to England as a young child.