17/04/2024

Hope Powell has stepped down as Brighton and Hove Albion coach effective immediately. (Photo: Brighton and Hove Albion)

Brighton and Hove Albion coach Hope Powell has stepped down effective immediately. The decision comes after losing 8-0 to Tottenham Hotspur last weekend.

After a disappointing start to the season, only winning one of their opening five games, the manager has decided it is time to step down as coach of the second-last club on the FA WSL table.

Despite having the same amount of possession with the ball, they conceded eight goals with six more shots being on target in the brutal loss.

Since the start of the Women’s Super League 2022/23 season, Brighton has also been defeated by Arsenal, Manchester United and Chelsea. In each of their losses it has conceded at least two goals and never seemed like winning the game.

Not only has the club failed to get going in the Women’s Super League, but also suffered a disappointing loss to Birmingham City in the group stage of the FA WSL Cup.

“We’ve had a very challenging start to the new season with many changes to our squad and results not going as we had all hoped. Sunday’s heavy loss at home to Tottenham was particularly disappointing,” Powell told media.

“As a club, we’ve made a lot of progress in the past five years, but I feel now is the right time to step aside and allow a new coach to take the team forward with plenty of Super League football still to play this season.”

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Joining the club in 2017, Powell led Brighton and Hove Albion to seventh place last season, and a club best sixth place the season before. Managing a total of 116 matches, she held a winning percentage of just over 40 per cent.

In her time with the club, she brought experience and leadership, especially to the younger players of the squad. The former England women’s team coach is now ready for the next challenge in her career.

Michelle Walder, chair of the club board at Brighton and Hove Albion had some kind words to say about Hope Powell.

“Hope’s contribution to the development of women’s and girls’ football at our club, and for the women’s game in this country, cannot be underestimated,” Walder said.

“Hope has established Brighton and Hove Albion in the Women’s Super League, has overseen the opening of a new state-of-the-art women’s and girls’ teams training facility at our club.

“[She] has undoubtedly inspired further generations of young girls to play football. We wish her well for the future.”

Assistant manager Amy Merricks will take control as interim manager of the team. Merricks’ first game in charge will be up against West Ham United this coming weekend.

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