United States 'desperate to improve' - Hayes

Emma Hayes takes a United States training session

Emma Hayes says her United States side have shown they are "desperate to improve" since taking over as manager.

Hayes ended her 12-year stint as Chelsea boss at the end of the Women's Super League season and quickly headed across the Atlantic to begin her new role.

She will take charge of her first game on Saturday, when the US play South Korea in a friendly at 22:00 BST.

The US exited last year's Women's World Cup at the quarter-final stage, having won the previous two editions, and Hayes has been brought in to help them return to their former heights.

She said her focus has been on "building trust" in her first few weeks while taking it "one step at a time".

"The players' learning has been unbelievable this week, their attention to detail, their thirst for knowledge, their application," Hayes told a news conference on Friday.

"We all know they're competitive. They've been incredibly studious all week and I'm really proud of the effort they've put in."

Hayes' appointment was announced six months ago, but she has not had much time to get to know her new team.

She has been holding 15-minute meetings with players to build relationships with her squad as she adapts to life in her new role.

The 47-year-old has been pleased with how they have responded to her arrival.

"The most important thing has been the ability to grasp information really, really quickly and learn.

"They're sponges, unbelievable sponges, no matter what we've thrown at them this week they're taking on, absorbing it."

Twila Kilgore managed the US on an interim basis after Vlatko Andonovski resigned following their unexpected World Cup exit, leading them to victory in the 2024 SheBelieves Cup.

Hayes says she wants to build on Kilgore's work rather than lead a complete overhaul.

"Twila has in the last six months, put in place some building blocks. My job this week is to fill the detail.

"Is there going to be transition away from it? No, it's, it's being built upon that. I think there are lots of different things, but the differences are the details as opposed to major structural changes."

Hayes' short-term focus will be on this summer's Olympics and she said selecting a group of players will be "a difficult one", but for now her focus is on guiding her team through her first friendlies.