The Lionesses secured their first ever major tournament silverware at Wembley last month, prompting WSL ticket sales to skyrocket ahead of the upcoming season.
While the WSL had been run by the FA since its inception in 2011, Hayes believes the time is now for an independent body to take over and grow the league to new heights.
Hayes calls on Premier League to act
Euro 2022 was a roaring success and a record European crowd of more than 87,000 people packed Wembley for England’s final against Germany.
After Sarina Wiegman’s side clinched a memorable victory, the demand for WSL tickets is now higher than ever and Hayes wants the league to start operating more like a business.
“That win, if it didn’t open the eyes of the Premier League it will do now,” she told the Daily Mail.
“You know, I’m a big advocate of that, because the appetite is there and I’ve always been an advocate of the women’s game becoming a business and I think we’ve now entered that phase of women’s football becoming a business.
“The next step is the league leaving the FA and going to the Premier League or an independent body and that there is a vision around the women’s game, so we don’t just have single big moments [or] single events once every two years, or once a year [and] that they’re every week.”
Hayes also stressed that it should not be the FA’s responsibility to run the league and that the time is now to let others take over.
“We need the expertise coming into the game. For me, that is hands down the next step and I’ve been really vocal about it because you need experience. That’s not the FA’s responsibility, they don’t run leagues. It’s not their job to do that, they’re there for the national team. It should be in the hands [of those] who have experience doing that [running leagues]. That’s the real legacy for me.”
How Hayes has transformed Chelsea
When Hayes took over the Blues in 2012, the team were still limited on resources and some way behind other top teams in the WSL.
Fast forward a decade and the English manager has turned Chelsea into one of the best teams in Europe and the WSL’s most successful team.
Hayes has won five WSL titles, four Women’s FA Cups, as well as two League Cups since taking over and her side are far from finished just yet.
🏆 5 x WSL Champions— London Is Blue Podcast ⭐️⭐️ (@LondonBluePod) August 14, 2022
🏆 4 x FA Cup
🏆 2 x Conti Cup
🏆 1 x Summer Series
🏆 1 x Community Shield
10 years of Emma Hayes. 💙 pic.twitter.com/fDRVGyVwJT
Are Chelsea favourites for the WSL this season?
The Blues have won three WSL titles in a row and came from behind on the final day of last season against Man United to finish ahead of Arsenal.
This season, Chelsea have bolstered their defence with the addition of world-class Canadian defender Kadeisha Buchanan, while French full-back Ève Périsset has joined from Bordeaux.
Both Arsenal and Manchester City have also strengthened over the summer but with the likes of Sam Kerr, Fran Kirby and Pernille Harder in their ranks, Chelsea will still be the favourites to secure a fourth consecutive league title.