Rachel Yankey feels efforts should be made to increase the number of female coaches, and hopes that Phil Neville’s appointment as England Women head coach will raise the sport’s profile.

The England Women’s team announced Neville as their new manager after a drawn out recruitment process. Chelsea manager Emma Hayes and former England captain Mo Marley, who was recently England’s caretaker manager, were both linked with the position.

However, Yankey feels that neither were that interested in taking the job. She believes that work must be done to increase the number of female coaches, so that there are more female applicants than male in the future.

“I don’t think Emma ever wanted the job, I’m not totally sure on Mo either,” she told Betfair. “We’ve got to increase the number of female coaches out there, so that when opportunities like this come knocking there are twice as many females going for the job as male.”

WALSALL, ENGLAND – NOVEMBER 24: England women’s interim head coach Mo Marley looks on during the FIFA Women’s World Cup Qualifier between England and Bosnia at Banks’ Stadium on November 24, 2017 in Walsall, England. (Photo by Nathan Stirk/Getty Images)

Yankey seems determined to find the positives in Neville’s appointment. She feels that he could raise the profile of the women’s game and boost attendances.

“I think this appointment will boost the profile of the game and we will see more role models and former male footballers going into the women’s game.

“You could look at that as ‘a bad thing for female coaching and the women’s game’, but really I would look at it from the perspective of the profile of the game and boosting spectatorship.”

At the very least, Neville will inherit a talented group of players that are third in the world rankings. England’s strong showings in the last World Cup and European Championships means there’ll be expectations on them to perform in the 2019 World Cup.

Neville should know all about that, given the clubs he’s played for in his career, so the pressure shouldn’t be a problem.