April 5, 2024

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Hannah Dingley Becomes First Female Head Coach in English Men’s Professional Football

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Hannah Dingley Becomes First Female Head Coach in English Men's Professional Football

Tuesday saw the appointment of Hannah Dingley as the interim head coach of the English football team Forest Green Rovers, making her the league’s first female head coach.

Duncan Ferguson, who was hired as Forest Green’s manager in January but was unable to prevent the team from being dropped to League 2, the second-tier of professional English football, is replaced by Dingley.

The club is searching for a permanent replacement, so Dingley’s position as head coach is only temporary.

“I’m really excited for this next step of my career,” Tuesday’s statement from Dingley.

“The full season will soon start, but preseason has just started. Football is in a thrilling period right now. I am appreciative of the chance to take the helm of such a progressive and forward-thinking club.”

As the only woman in charge of a men’s English Football League Academy, Dingley joined Forest Green four years ago, the club said in a statement.

“Hannah was the natural choice for us to be first team interim Head Coach – she’s done a fantastic job leading our Academy and is well aligned with the values of the club,” Dale Vince, the chairman of Forest Green, stated on Tuesday.

“We’ll make history by appointing Hannah as the first female head coach in English (men’s) football. This may be significant for the men’s game.”

For Wednesday’s exhibition game against Melksham Town, Dingley will lead Forest Green onto the field.

Forest Green is well known for attempting to make a difference off the field while under Vince’s ownership.

According to the Vegan Society, Forest Green established itself as the first vegan club in the world in 2017. Sustainability is at the core of everything it does, and some of its players have even switched to a plant-based diet.

FIFA also named Forest Green the “greenest club in the world” in 2017 and it continues to find innovative ways to lower its carbon footprint – such as organic pitches and electric team coaches.

Reference: edition.cnn.com

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