‘The goal is just a little bit too big’: Chelsea Women manager Emma Hayes calls for nets to be made smaller as she says women’s game does not have to mirror everything from men’s football
- Emma Hayes is one of the most successful managers in women’s game currently
- But she believes focus on copying men’s game is damaging view of women’s
- Hayes also said she would take the opportunity to take a job in men’s game
Chelsea Women manager Emma Hayes has called for goals to be made smaller to better deal with women’s ‘physical differences’.
Hayes is one of the most successful current managers in the women’s game, having won the FA Cup in 2018 and led the Blues to the semi-finals of the Champions League.
She was also given an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours last year, but believes a focus on ‘mirroring’ the men’s game has had a negative impact on the perception of the women’s.
Chelsea Women manager Emma Hayes has called for goals to be made smaller
As part of State of Play, a BT Sport film, Hayes said: ‘If I took a male player and a female player and I asked them to run 10 yards, more often than not, though that’s changing, the male player would get there quicker than a female player.
‘If the same male player and female player were to be in standing positions and both jump, the range for a male is going to be greater than that of a woman. So you think where’s its relevance?
‘Well, first it would be in goal keeping for example. There is often a criticism about goal keeping in the women’s game, I would argue that the goal is just a little bit too big, if it was built around our physical differences then we would be talking about great goal keepers as opposed to exposing them.
‘Rather than mirror everything we take from the men’s game, we have to adapt it to our own sport and our own physical expectations as well as the tactical implications.
Hayes said that they should adapt them ‘to our own sport and our own physical expectations’
‘It’s the mind-set that has to change, and once it starts to change, there is a realization that the sport has its own differences because, more often than not, everyone coming into our game is coming from the men’s game or other sports.’
Hayes has regularly been touted as the most likely candidate from the women’s game to be given a job in charge of a men’s side.
And she admitted she’d take a job if offered: ‘I have a sort of responsibility to say yes.
‘At some point someone has to break that barrier to do it. The reality is that I have a fantastic job that I love doing and I’m busy being a parent, but if my responsibility is to push a door down and open it, whether I walk through it or somebody else does that for me, that I push the conversation.
‘With time as we have seen with women working in football in the media, hopefully we can desensitise the conversation to where at some point, some owner will eventually say at least I want to interview a female for this position.’
State of Play, the next film in the award-winning BT Sport Films series, will premiere at 10.30pm on Wednesday May 29th on BT Sport 2
She also admitted that she would take a job in the men’s game is she were offered a role