Chelsea Ladies' Emma Hayes could emulate Jose Mourinho

By Jessica CreightonBBC Sport
Emma Hayes
Chelsea Ladies are in pole position in the race for the FA Women's Super League title with two games remaining

Chelsea Ladies coach Emma Hayes could emulate Jose Mourinho by guiding the Blues to a historic League title.

Like their male counterparts under Mourinho, Chelsea Ladies top their league under Hayes, the only female coach in the Women's Super League top flight.

She told BBC Sport: "I admire his work, he's a phenomenal coach.

"We're quite an integrated club. I've had the opportunity to sit down with their first-team staff."

Chelsea Ladies' remaining Super League fixtures
5 October: Everton Ladies 14:00 BST (Home)
12 October: Manchester City Women 14:00 BST (Away)

Hayes, 37, continued: "We talked about the quality of female players coming through. He's got a very keen interest in this whole club.

"[Mourinho] is very keen to see Chelsea evolve from top to bottom."

Chelsea Ladies have never finished higher than sixth since the WSL's inception three seasons ago, yet hold a one-point lead over Liverpool Ladies with just two games remaining.

Hayes, who joined the club in 2012, made a flurry of signings ahead of the current campaign in search of the ideal balance between English and foreign talent.

Jose Mourinho
Chelsea Ladies manager Emma Hayes says Mourinho is keen to see all Chelsea teams evolve

England internationals Rachel Williams and Laura Bassett joined from Birmingham City, as well as South Korea star Ji So-Yun.

"Bringing in a lot of winners to the club this year has had a big impact, especially on our younger players, and I think we've got the spine of the team right," Hayes said.

"We've got top English players in here and everybody can see it's made a massive difference. They've made my job easier.

"Great players win titles, not necessarily great managers. Ji is capable of becoming one of the best players in the world. She's still only 23."

Women's Super League table
Chelsea Ladies FC1223
Liverpool Ladies1222
Birmingham City Ladies1221
Arsenal Ladies FC1217
Manchester City Women1116
Bristol Academy Women1113
Notts County Ladies FC1111
Everton Ladies FC114

Hayes, who has coached in the United States, became the only female manager in English women's top-flight football after Shelley Kerr left Arsenal Ladies to become the first woman to coach a Scottish senior men's team.

She insists her gender doesn't put her under any added pressure.

"I was the only one in America so it's not unfamiliar territory, she said. "I think there's sometimes too much attention paid to it, we don't talk about it in other professions."

Hayes, who spent three seasons as Arsenal Ladies' first-team assistant coach, says female coaches need more practical experience to earn high-profile roles.

"Are they adding to their CVs, or are they spending all their time in coaching education?

"I feel a lot more practical experience needs to happen for female coaches in order for them to get more jobs.

"You've got to get yourself around the best. I'm grateful that I've had a lot of good people to learn from."