Ex-Chelsea and Liverpool manager Matthew Beard revealed he jumped at the chance to take change of Boston Breakers, while explaining his plans to take the NWSL club forward – in an exclusive interview with the Daily Cannon.
Having spent three years with Chelsea Ladies and a further three years with Liverpool Ladies, Beard’s move across the pond will have surprised many in 2015.
The two-time Manager of the Year told us that while the NWSL have some catching up to do, in terms of infrastructure and facilities, the salary cap enforced makes for a much more competitive league.
You’ve managed in the WSL and NWSL, what do you think the former could learn from the latter?
“Tough question that one. I think both leagues have come such a long way in a short space of time. The salary cap in The NWSL keeps the league competitive unlike the FAWSL.
“I would probably say the stadiums and facilities are better back in England especially the teams that are linked with male professional clubs. But that is area that continues to improve in America.”
You had some fantastic years at Liverpool, but what were the reasons for your switch to Boston Breakers in 2015?
“There was a lot of talk about Liverpool having a big budget during my time. That certainly wasn’t the case.
“We couldn’t compete with the likes of Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester City which was really frustrating for me, and we started to lose key players – such as Lucy Bronze for example.
“The NWSL was a league that I followed as Mark Parsons was at Washington and Laura Harvey at Seattle, so when this opportunity became available I jumped at the chance.
“I wanted to challenge myself in a different country and become a better coach because of that experience. The job at Boston has been a big one but we have made great progress since I came here.”
You’ve had a rough time with the Breakers. Is there any chance of a return to England? Or are you determined to put things right with Boston?
“I’ve been satisfied with my work here. It was a big job that I took on at Boston.
“We have made great progress both on & off the pitch as a club and built a competitive squad here.
Great night with everyone involved with @BostonBreakers! I'm honored to continue the journey started 2 years ago! Here's to looking forward!
— Matthew Beard (@mattbeard02) October 6, 2017
“The next part of this process is to improve our starting 11 with international players so we can really push for the top-four.
“With regards to my personal situation, me and my family are settled in America, but I know it is a results-based business so you never know what the future holds.”
Not sure how much WSL football you see these days, but do you have a tip for the WSL1 title?
“I feel Chelsea and Manchester City will be the top two. I look at the Chelsea squad and I think they will win it all depends if Manchester City strengthen in the January transfer window.
“I, of course, watch the WSL with interest, it’s great that games are now being shown on Facebook so I can watch 90-minute games rather than the highlights.
Thanks to Matt for speaking with us at the Daily Cannon. We wish him and the Boston Breakers the best of luck this season.