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NEWS: Eastern Sports Club?s first female coach takes men?s football team to top-flight title (China)

r80658_600x400_3-2Hong Kong trailblazer Chan Yuen-ting became the first woman coach to take a men?s football team to a top-flight title thanks to the toughness that earned her the nickname ?beefball? and a teenage crush on David Beckham.

Chan, 27, led Eastern Sports Club to win Hong Kong?s Premier League in April for the first time in 21 years.

It was Chan?s debut season as head coach and earned her a Guinness World Record as the first woman coach ever to win a men?s championship title in a top national football league.

Her path into the game started as a 13-year-old, when she became glued to watching Manchester United games on TV and, in particular, their England legend Beckham, whom she swooned over as ?handsome?.

The crush soon developed into a love of the game itself and propelled her into a football coaching career, despite opposition from her parents.

?I think no matter your age or your gender, what you need is hard work,? Chan told AFP.

?You are nothing if your team is doing badly.?

On the pitch I forget my gender as a woman. I just hope to show my abilities.?

After playing amateur football for university teams and representing Hong Kong, Chan decided to take the coaching track so she could break into the men?s professional game.

She went from assistant coach to head coach at Eastern in December after her predecessor accepted an offer from a club in mainland China.


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