New Scotland Women manager Shelley Kerr's '˜dream comes true'

Shelley Kerr will not be included in the Scotland Women set-up for Euro 2017, despite her appointment as the next head coach being confirmed by the Scottish FA yesterday.

Shelley Kerr will be an observer at the Euro 2017 finals before taking charge of Scotland Women.
Shelley Kerr will be an observer at the Euro 2017 finals before taking charge of Scotland Women.

The 47-year-old will attend the tournament in the Netherlands as an observer only. She will then take charge of the side for the 2019 World Cup qualifiers, which start four weeks later. Kerr will attend the draw in Switzerland on 25 April with performance director Malky Mackay and admitted she was thrilled to have landed the top job in Scottish women’s football.

“As a young girl and being extremely passionate about Scotland, it was my ambition to represent my country,” she said. “To get the opportunity to lead the national team is a dream come true.

Sign up to our Football newsletter

“I have never hidden the fact that I have always been very ambitious as an aspiring coach and I have tried to give myself as broad a skill set as possible to help me achieve my goals.”

The former Scotland captain will remain as head coach of Stirling University until the end of the season and said her three years as the first female head coach of a British senior men’s team had been 

“It was extremely beneficial to my personal and professional development,” she pointed out. “The knowledge sharing and support, expertise and guidance provided by the high development coaches there made it an enjoyable and rewarding experience.

“Anna Signeul (pictured) has done a fantastic job during her 12 years in the role and has really changed the perception of the girls’ and women’s game in Scotland.

“We have a great group of players and my goal is to continue the good work and sustain the level of success that the team has achieved in recent years.”

Mackay said Kerr was the outstanding candidate for a job which has only been occupied by two head coaches – Signeul and Vera Pauw – since 1998.

“She is a deep thinker of the game, but also has a huge passion for football and that shone through in the interview process,” he pointed out.

“Naming Shelley as Anna’s successor now gives her the best chance to prepare for the World Cup qualifiers, which start only four weeks after the end of the Euros in the summer.”

Cathy Gallagher, the director of sport at the University of Stirling, said: “While we are obviously disappointed to be losing Shelley, we are immensely proud of what she has achieved here and wish her all the best in her new role.”

The search for a new head coach of the Lowland League side will not start until after a strategy review.