Meet Helen Lorraine Nkwocha – a British woman who first achieved considerable success at the level of a player in English clubs (a student of the Manchester United academy played for Millwall, Wimbledon, Crystal Palace and Fulham), then worked in the USA in the regional departments of football schools of Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal and also worked at the New York Red Bulls Academy. And what is even more interesting – the career of a football player Helen combined with the police service, until she finally decided to focus on football coaching, moreover, she switched from working with girls to training representatives of the opposite sex.
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Not so long ago, fate brought Nkwocha to the Faroe Islands, where she headed the TB Tveroyri club. First, she worked with the youth team, and then she was entrusted with the foundation. Perhaps out of despair, because at the time Helen took the reins, her team had such indicators – 0 wins, 3 draws and 19 defeats, as well as a goal difference of “minus 64”.
It didn’t get any easier after the arrival of Nkvocha – in the very first match under her leadership, TB Tveroyri was defeated by an opponent with a score of 1: 6. But here we must admit – the opponents were strong HB Torshavn, one of the grandees of Faroese football. That is just the fact that before the game he was ahead of the team of the female coach by four dozen points.
Be that as it may, but Helen has already written her name in the history of European football – before her, no one worked with a men’s team in the elite division of the Old World. Albeit a humble Faroese.
And what about other examples of the work of female trainers with male teams? They were also.
First of all, let’s recall the Frenchwoman Corinne Diacre, who worked with Clermont in the French Ligue 2. This is perhaps the coolest club, whose main men’s team was entrusted to a woman coach.
But there is also Zhan Yuanding from Hong Kong, who is considered the most awarded female coach in men’s football. In 2016, she won the major league of her home country with the Eastern club, and then she was recognized as the coach of the year in Hong Kong and the best women’s coach of the year in Asia.
I wonder who is next to be entrusted with the responsible mission of coaching men as a woman? And how soon will it come to this in the teams of the Top 4 European divisions?