England Lionesses have announced Netherlands’ Sarina Wiegman as Phil Neville’s successor from September 2021.
Weigman will take over after she has honoured her commitment to guide Netherlands at next summer’s Olympics, with her first tournament as Lionesses boss coming on home soil at 2022 Women’s Euros in which her current team enters as defending champions.
Speaking on her decision to succeed Neville as manager, Wiegman said that she is “delighted and honoured” to take up the role.
Wiegman also spoke of the recent rise of Women’s Football and especially in England, saying; “England is the cradle of football and the major developments in women’s football globally over recent years have been led by the FA.
“I’m very much looking forward to contributing my experience and expertise to this ambitious team.”Embed from Getty Images
The current Dutch manager also paid tribute to Netherlands Women in which she guided to 2017 Women’s Euro glory at home, describing the team’s journey as “amazing” whilst acknowledging that there is still work to do in terms of qualifying for the Women’s Euros and challenging for Olympic gold.
Wiegman admitted that achieving both targets “would be a fitting completion for me” in regards to everything that she aimed to achieve in women’s football in Holland, whilst reiterating that her current focus is “100 per cent..” on the Netherlands team over next 12 months.
English FA Chief Executive Officer, Mark Bullingham revealed that Weigman is considered a “proven winner…” and “was the outstanding candidate from a very strong field.”
Bullingham also stated his belief that Wiegman can take England “to the next level, giving us the best possible opportunity of achieving our ambition to win a major tournament.”
Director of Women’s Football, Baroness Sue Campbell meanwhile described Wiegman as a “perfect cultural fit, which is crucially important in building a winning team.”
Campbell also praised the 50 year-old’s “hugely impressive” qualities in technical expertise, leadership and mentality as key factors behind her appointment.
What Does Wiegman’s Appointment Means for Olympics?Embed from Getty Images
Wiegman will remain with Netherlands for this coming season as they prepare for next summer’s Olympics in Tokyo, Japan.
Neville’s contract meanwhile ends in July 2021 meaning that he could decide to leave his role, instead of managing Team GB in Tokyo although the English FA have vowed to “renew our dialogue with the home nations…” with the head coach position set to be announced in due course.