Vera Pauw appointed Republic of Ireland senior manager

Wed, Sep 04 2019

Ireland saw off the challenge of Montenegro in Tallaght under the guidance of Colin Bell's former assistant Tom O'Connor. Credit: Peter Fitzpatrick (ETPhotos)

Former Netherlands and Scotland coach Vera Pauw has been appointed manager of the Republic of Ireland senior national team.

The Dutch native takes over from Colin Bell, who resigned in July to take up a coaching role with Huddersfield Town’s men’s team.

Bell’s assistant Tom O’Connor took charge of last month’s friendly defeat to the United States and Tuesday’s Euro 2021 qualification win over Montenegro.

Pauw was present at the Montenegro game after finalising terms on a deal that will take her through to the end of the current campaign.

The 56-year-old represented her country 89 times during a decorated playing career and became the first Dutch player to play professionally abroad when she signed for Modena in 1988.

Following her retirement as a player, she managed the Scotland, the Netherlands, Russia and South Africa national teams and had a spell in the US with Houston Dash in 2018.

The FAI had interviewed a number of high-profile candidates for the job, including former England coach Hope Powell and Germany under-19 manager Maren Meinert, but couldn’t agree terms.

O’Connor had been expected to continue in a coaching role with the national team but it appears Pauw is set to appoint her own backroom team.

“I am very excited at the prospect of managing the Republic of Ireland Women’s National Team for the remainder of this European Championship campaign and I believe we can achieve very positive results together,” said Pauw.

"I was impressed with what I saw versus Montenegro and I want to wish Tom well for his future career and thank him for the excellent job he has done with the Ireland team in recent weeks.”

FAI high performance director Ruud Dokter added: “Vera is a top-class manager who will bring a wealth of experience and knowledge to our Women’s National Team while contributing to a healthier women’s game in Ireland. I am very much looking forward to working with her.”