Ireland are searching for a new head coach after long-serving Sue Ronan steps down

The former international was in charge for three qualifying campaigns.

Sue Ronan was appointed head coach in October 2010, taking over from Noel King.
Sue Ronan was appointed head coach in October 2010, taking over from Noel King.
Image: Tommy Dickson/INPHO

AFTER SIX YEARS at the helm, Sue Ronan has announced her decision to step down as head coach of the Ireland women’s national team.

The 52-year-old, who represented Ireland as a player, will now focus on her role as Head of Women’s Football for the Football Association of Ireland (FAI).

Ireland’s Euro 2017 qualifying campaign finished in disappointing fashion last week with a fifth defeat in eight group outings to Portugal.

In the three campaigns Ronan presided over, the national team failed to qualify for a major tournament.

“It has been an absolute honour to have had the opportunity to manage my country for the last six years,” Ronan said.

“While we unfortunately haven’t achieved our goal of qualifying for a final tournament, it has been a pleasure working with a such a group of dedicated players who have always given their all to me personally and for the green jersey.

“I feel with the experience we now have in this squad, along with the quality of youngsters currently on our underage teams, the future looks very bright and will ultimately lead us to that goal of playing amongst the elite of Europe at a major finals.”

Sue Ronan Source: Cathal Noonan/INPHO

FAI CEO John Delaney paid tribute to Ronan, saying that she has been a ‘driving force’ in the women’s game in this country.

“Women’s football has made tremendous strides in Ireland over recent years thanks to the hard work of coaches, administrators, officials, volunteers, and people like Sue Ronan,” said Delaney.

“Ireland is now recognised as one of the most improved nations in Europe when it comes to women’s football and Sue will continue to play a big part in that,” he said.

“From her work with the Women’s Senior Team to her championing of the Continental Tyres Women’s National League, she has been at the forefront of the development of the game.

“I have no doubt that Sue will continue to be a driving force in the women’s game in her role as Head of Women’s Football.”

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Ronan will still be in charge for a friendly against a Basque Country XI at Tallaght Stadium on Saturday 26 November.

The FAI will begin the recruitment process for a new head coach shortly and the association says an appointment will be made before the year is out.

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Ryan Bailey

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