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Phil Neville has paved way for woman to coach men’s team, says England assistant Bev Priestman (UK)

England assistant Bev Priestman believes Phil Neville has taken women’s football to a “new level” and says it is only a matter of time before a female coach makes the transition to the men’s game.

Neville was named head coach of the Lionesses despite no prior experience of women’s football — not an uncommon story — but a woman is yet to manage in the men’s game.

Priestman, who has been Neville’s assistant since the start of World Cup qualifiers last year, credited the former Manchester United player with bringing a new respect to the women’s game, which could pave the way for a female coach to make it in men’s football.

“I think it’s heading that way,” Priestman said, ahead of England’s second World Cup match against Argentina here in Le Havre tomorrow.

“The respect and profile of the women’s game is getting bigger and bigger. Look at the [TV] viewing figures of 6.1million [for Sunday’s win over Scotland].

“That’s phenomenal. It’s become more attractive for a male to come into the female game and the respect female managers like Emma [Hayes at Chelsea] get is fantastic.



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