Mentorship Program

In July 2023, the Washington Spirit announced its inaugural Coaching Mentorship program to elevate and support female soccer coaches in the Washington, D.C. region.


Read the announcement >

About the Program

In addition to increasing opportunities for female coaches in the game, the mentorship program is designed to proactively develop careers, create a coaching pipeline, and provide a valuable professional network.

The four applicants selected to participate in the program will be partnered with a Spirit coach as a mentor from August 2023 – July 2024 and will receive approximately 150 hours of mentorship. Throughout the program, mentees will:

1. Develop a broad tactical understanding of soccer specific tactics

2. Be introduced to various technologies that are revolutionizing the game

3. Gain insight into current and innovative Performance and Strength & Conditioning methodology

4. Learn and work through opponent analysis and game preparation.


Angela Salem

Angela Salem joined the Washington Spirit staff as an assistant coach in the Spring of 2022.

Salem spent 12 years in the professional game, including stops in various leagues in the United States, Australia and Finland. Most recently, Salem spent four seasons with the Portland Thorns. In 2021, she helped the Thorns to the NWSL Challenge Cup, the NWSL Shield, and the International Champions Cup. She was also named a finalist for the NWSL Most Valuable Player award and a member of the NWSL Best XI.

While she played much of her NWSL career in Portland, she spent a season with the Spirit in 2015.

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Mami Yamaguchi

Mami Yamaguchi joined the Washington Spirit as as Assistant Coach/Player Development Coach in 2023 after most recently serving as an assistant coach with Detroit City FC.

Originally from Nishitokyo, Japan, Yamaguchi appeared in 18 matches for the Japan Women’s National Team, scoring eight goals. She played professionally for over a decade across top-tier leagues in Japan, the United States and Sweden, appearing in over 130 club matches.

Prior to turning pro, Yamaguchi played three seasons at Florida State University, winning college soccer’s most prestigious award, the MAC Hermann Trophy, in 2007.

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Mike Bristol

Mike Bristol joined the Washington Spirit as Director of Player Personnel/Assistant Coach in the Fall of 2022 after being brought on as a consultant for the club in July of the same year.

Bristol most recently held an assistant coaching position at Florida State University as part of Mark Krikorian’s staff for 13 seasons. Specializing in team defending as an assistant for the Seminoles, Bristol oversaw a defending third that averaged over 14 shutouts per season and held a goals against average (GAA) of 0.69 while helping FSU to three national championships during his tenure.

Additionally, he has previously served as an assistant coach at the University of Maryland and Illinois State University. As a player, Bristol was a four-year starter in goal for the Western Illinois University Leathernecks from 1995 through 1998, serving as a team captain for three seasons.

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Morinao Imaizumi

Morinao Imaizumi joined the Washington Spirit as Player Development Coach in November 2022 after a previous stint with the Chicago Red Stars.

Prior to coaching in the NWSL, Imaizumi spent roughly a decade a member of Spirit President Mark Krikorian’s coaching staff at Florida State University.

He also served as the youth development head coach at the Japan Football Association (JFA), later becoming the assistant director of coaching education at the JFA. Additionally, Imaizumi has been the head coach of multiple Japanese youth national teams and as an assistant coach for the senior team, including at the Tokyo Olympics in 2021.

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How to Apply

Please note, the application window has expired for the inaugural cohort. If you have any additional questions, please contact mentorship@washspirit.com.