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Mo Marley - all you need to know about the England Women's interim manager

Friday 29th September 2017
After Mark Sampson was sacked as England Women's head coach in unceremonious fashion last week, Mo Marley has been named as his replacement on an interim basis.

Marley has been the Under 19s coach for 16 years but what other coaching experience has she had and how well equipped is she to deal with her new role?
Marley spent her entire playing career at Everton, joining in 1988 when the club was known as Leasowe Pacific. Just a year later she went on to be part of a Women's FA Cup winning team, beating Fulham, 3-2, in the final at Old Trafford in front of an attendance of just 941 people. After impressing in the centre of defence, Marley became captain of the club and lead her side to a Premier League triumph in 1998.

Not only was she an Everton legend, she also played frequently for the team she's about to take charge of. Marley picked up 41 caps for England during her 24-year career and also went on to become captain of the national side. She made her debut against Italy in 1995 and scored her only international goal two years later in a 6-0 thrashing of Scotland in Sheffield. Marley's only major tournament as a Lioness was one to forget, as England finished bottom of their group in the 2001 European Championships in Germany. That included a couple of heavy losses to Sweden and Germany as well as a hard-fought 1-1 draw with Russia.

After becoming a legend of women's football, Mo Marley retired in 2002 to take over at Everton, the only club she had ever played for. Usually, with a change of manager, the one leaving has very little interaction with the new arrival. However, that would've been extremely difficult for Marley - the outgoing manager, who had just been sacked, was her husband. She had played under Keith Marley for many years before replacing him in the dugout when she retired.

As manager, Marley led her Everton team to Premier League and FA Cup glory towards the end of the 2000s, beating an all-conquering Arsenal team in 2010 at the City Ground to win their maiden FA Cup trophy. Her team that day included the likes of Jill Scott, Toni Duggan and Fara Williams, three names that have been heavily involved in the England Women's team in recent years, and holding 235 caps between them. Marley has also worked with a number of current England players as part of her role with the under 19s, so she'll know most of them inside out when she takes over her first coaching session as the national team head coach.
Taking everything into account - being a former England international, having vast managerial experience and working with the England youth teams - Marley seems very similar to Gareth Southgate. She's also one of only two English women to have a Continental Pro License for coaching, so she's more than qualified for the job. Her reputation speaks for itself. If Mo Marley has a positive impact on the squad during her interim period, don't be surprised if, like Southgate, she is appointed on a permanent basis.
Billy Munday

I'm a young, aspiring sports journalist and also a Chelsea fan, living the dream in London. You can find more examples of my work on Chelsea blogs such as the Chelsea Chronicle.

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