Manchester United have named former England captain Casey Stoney as the head coach of their new women’s team.
The Red Devils ended a 13-year absence from the women’s football when they were granted a license to play in the Women’s Championship for the 2018-19 season, the second-tier of the game in England.
Stoney, who earned 130 England caps and won 12 major trophies during her career, retired from playing earlier this year.
The 36-year-old has completed her coaching badges and worked with the Lionesses as assistant to boss Phil Neville, although she now faces the challenge of building a successful side from scratch.
“I’m delighted to have joined Manchester United. This is the biggest club in the world,” the former Liverpool and Arsenal defender told United’s official website.
“The fact that we are going to have a women’s team and I’m going to be able to introduce that from scratch, to build a team, build a philosophy, with the biggest club in the world, means that, for me, there is no more exciting opportunity.
“My ultimate aim is to grow this team so that every little girl growing up dreams of playing for Manchester United when she’s older, because they’re the most successful team in women’s football.”
United’s executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward added: “Appointing Casey shows the desire we have to succeed and her experience and knowledge of the game, both as a coach and as a player, made her a stand-out candidate for the role.
“Having captained many of the sides she has played for, she brings a positive and winning mentality which will be a huge benefit to the team.”