The FA’s advertisement for the England Women’s assistant manager asks for more experience than managerial prime candidate, Phil Neville, has.
The vacancy on the FA website sets out the criteria, stating: “You will be an outstanding, inspirational football coach with a track record of consistent and successful experience of development of elite women’s players with a minimum of 2 years international senior team experience.”
Many fans and writers don’t really understand why Phil Neville is getting the manager’s job, and this advert only makes it more confusing.
I’m not going to comment on the first part, because I have no idea whether Neville is an “outstanding, inspirational football coach”. Largely because he’s never managed a football team (bar a caretaker role at Salford City).
Maybe he’ll be good at it, maybe not.
On the second point, there’s no way the 40-year-old has a track record of successfully developing elite women’s players. He doesn’t work in the women’s game (or talk about it), so that’s not possible.
Finally, the minimum of two years international senior team experience is a debatable point. Neville has it in the men’s game, but not in the women’s.
If you think the skills are directly transferable, then he scrapes through on this criterion. Otherwise, this is another area he fails to make the grade.
If Neville can’t even meet the minimum requirements for an assistant role, surely he shouldn’t manage the team, unless the FA want a fully-qualified expert to guide him in a role they should probably give to the assistant they are seeking to hire.
It’s possible they increased the requirements because their prime managerial candidate is so under-qualified. At least then he’d have an experienced assistant to fall back on.
To me, hiring someone experienced for the top job would work better, but that might have been a woman and then what would the FA do with their mate, Phil?
The application closes tonight at midnight (Monday/Tuesday) so you still have time to get yours in if you feel like supporting the FA using the women’s team to give Phil Neville the experience needed to get his foot in the door without inflicting him on any of the men’s teams.