Sunday 28 November 2021, 08:00

The Best FIFA Women’s Coach: nominees in focus

  • Who will succeed Sarina Wiegman as The Best FIFA Women’s Coach?

  • Five candidates are on this year’s shortlist, including Wiegman herself

  • We take a closer look at the nominees

From UEFA Women’s Champions League winners to Olympic gold medallists, who will follow in Sarina Wiegman’s footsteps as The Best FIFA Women’s Coach this year – or can she take home the prize for the second year running? Have your say by voting for the coach you think most deserves to collect this prestigious award on 17 January 2022. To help you decide, let us take a closer look at the candidates in this year‘s race to become The Best FIFA Women’s Coach.

Lluis Cortes

Lluis Cortes celebrated his greatest triumph as a coach last season as he guided Barcelona to a historic treble. They won the league, cup and – for the first time in the club’s history – the UEFA Women’s Champions League, where they comfortably defeated Chelsea 4-0 in the final. By the time the curtain fell on their campaign, his team had scored a remarkable 208 goals in 47 competitive matches. Cortes was crowned UEFA Women’s Coach of the Year 2020/21 in recognition of his achievements. Did you know? Lluis Cortes stepped down as Barcelona coach at the end of June. In November 2021 it was announced that the 35-year-old Spaniard would be taking charge of the Ukraine women’s national team. He made his official touchline debut in a FIFA Women’s World Cup™ qualifier against Scotland on 26 November.

Peter Gerhardsson

Peter Gerhardsson led Sweden to the final of the Women’s Olympic Football Tournament 2020 in Tokyo. His team remained unbeaten on their way to the gold medal match against Canada, a run that included a resounding 3-0 group stage win over world champions USA. The Swedes lost on penalties in the final, but went home having wowed the world. Did you know? Between October 2020 and August 2021, Sweden coach Peter Gerhardsson steered his team to 12 wins, two draws and only one defeat.

Emma Hayes

What a year for Emma Hayes! She led Chelsea to FA Women's Super League glory, triumphed in the Women’s League Cup and masterminded their first-ever appearance in the UEFA Women's Champions League final. She was rewarded for her performances with the FA WSL Manager of the Season 2020-21 award. Did you know? Hayes was the first female coach in 12 years to reach the Women’s Champions League final. The last woman to do so was current Germany coach Martina Voss-Tecklenburg, who lifted the trophy with Duisburg in 2009.

Beverly Priestman

Beverly Priestman, the second Englishwoman on the shortlist, brought Canada their biggest-ever footballing accolade. Despite only succeeding Kenneth Heiner-Moller as head coach in October 2020, the 35-year-old led the Canucks on an unbeaten run to Olympic gold in Tokyo within her first year. Did you know? In 15 internationals since February, Priestman has a record of seven wins, six draws and only two defeats, including a record-breaking unbeaten run of 12 matches and Canada’s first win over world champions USA in 20 years.

Sarina Wiegman

This is already the fifth nomination for The Best FIFA Women’s Coach for Sarina Wiegman, who has taken home the award on two previous occasions. Wiegman, who has been coaching the England women’s national team since September 2021, reached the quarter-finals of the Women’s Olympic Football Tournament with the Netherlands, where they were narrowly beaten on penalties by USA. Did you know? Wiegman is the Lionesses‘ first non-British head coach.