|Role:||Head Coach of the Netherlands Women's Football Team|
Sarina Wiegman (born 26 October 1969), also known as Sarina Wiegman-Glotzbach, is a Dutch former footballer, who played as a central midfielder and, later in her career, as a defender. In 2001, she became the first Dutch footballer to gain 100 caps.
After retiring from play in 2003, Wiegman started a managerial career, coaching the women’s teams of Ter Leede and ADO Den Haag. In 2014, she became assistant manager of the national team. In 2016, Wiegman received her coaching licence and became the first woman to work as coach at a Dutch professional football organisation.
Wiegman was born in The Hague and started playing football on the street at an early age. At the age of six, she joined ESDO from Wassenaar, where she played alongside boys. She also played for HSV Celeritas from The Hague, where she could join the women’s team.
In 1987, Wiegman joined KFC ’71, where she won the KNVB Cup in the same year.
In 1988, while in China for the 1988 FIFA Women’s Invitation Tournament, she met USWNT head coach Anson Dorrance, who invited her to come study at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and play for the North Carolina Tar Heels women’s soccer team, which was actualised in 1989. At North Carolina, Wiegman played alongside such players as Mia Hamm, Kristine Lilly and Carla Overbeck. They became NCAA champions in 1989.
Wiegman later described the team quality and working conditions as being “of the highest level”, which made for a stark contrast with the situation in the Netherlands when she returned there after one year. Here, all women’s players had to work aside from football. Wiegman became a physical education teacher, a job she would keep for the rest of her playing career.
In 1994, Wiegman joined Ter Leede, where she would win two Dutch championships (2001 and 2003) and one KNVB Cup (2001). In 2003, she retired after becoming pregnant with her second child.
Wiegman gained 104 caps for the Netherlands, scoring three goals, between 1987 and 2001. She also captained the team.
In 1986, at the age of sixteen, Wiegman was first selected for the Netherlands. On 23 May 1987, at the age of 17, she made her debut in an away match against Norway, which coincidentally was Dick Advocaat’s only match in charge of the Netherlands Women. She played at the 1988 FIFA Women’s Invitation Tournament, where the Netherlands reached the quarter-finals. Wiegman also helped the Netherlands reach the quarter-finals of the 1989, 1991 and 1993 European Championships, although they never reached the final tournament of an official World Cup or European Championship.
On 9 April 2001, Wiegman gained her 100th cap in a home friendly against Denmark, becoming the first Dutch footballer to do so. Two days later, she was honoured with a shield awarded by the men’s head coach Louis van Gaal. During his speech, he said: “I have a lot of respect for Sarina. For the men, everything is arranged. Here, this is much more difficult.” The first Dutch male footballer to achieve 100 caps, Frank de Boer, did so on 29 March 2003.
Wiegman played her final international game on 14 June 2001, a 2–0 away defeat against Czech Republic.
On 24 January 2006, it was announced that Wiegman would become manager of Ter Leede. With the team, she won the Dutch championship and the KNVB Cup in 2007. In the summer of 2007, she became manager of the women’s team of ADO Den Haag, who would be competing in the newly established Women’s Eredivisie. In 2012, she led ADO to the Eredivisie title and KNVB Cup. In 2013, ADO were once again victorious in the KNVB Cup.
On 1 August 2014, Wiegman left ADO to become assistant coach of the Netherlands women’s national football team, as well as coordinator of the women’s national under-19 team. On 27 March 2015, it was announced that Wiegman would be attending the KNVB course to obtain a coaching licence, becoming only the third woman to do so, after Vera Pauw and Hesterine de Reus. On 2 July 2015, it was announced that she would have an internship at Sparta Rotterdam.
On 1 August 2015, following Roger Reijners’ dismissal as head coach of the Netherlands Women, Wiegman was appointed as interim head coach. This lasted until 1 October, when Arjan van der Laan assumed his duties as the new head coach. Wiegman subsequently became assistant coach again.
On 31 July 2016, Wiegman received her UEFA Pro coaching licence, having completed the Dutch Football Association’s coaching course and a one-year internship at Sparta Rotterdam. In an interview with the KNVB, she said that having seen first-hand the high level of professionalism of men’s football in the Netherlands, she hoped to help bring women’s football in the Netherlands to the same level.
On 3 October 2016, it was announced that Wiegman would become temporary assistant of Ole Tobiasen at Jong Sparta Rotterdam (who appear in the 2016–17 Tweede Divisie), in addition to her work as Netherlands Women assistant. In doing so, she became the first female coach at a Dutch professional football organisation.
On 23 December 2016, Van der Laan was sacked by the KNVB and Wiegman was once again appointed interim head coach of the Netherlands Women. On 13 January 2017, the KNVB announced that Wiegman was installed as head coach on a permanent basis. At the same time, Foppe de Haan was appointed as her assistant.