FEATURED: Who is rumoured Everton target Jean-Luc Vasseur? | OneFootball
FEATURED: Who is rumoured Everton target Jean-Luc Vasseur?
The Barclays FA Women’s Super League’s managerial merry-go-round got underway yesterday with Everton parting company with manager Willie Kirk after almost three years in charge on Merseyside.
Kirk brought both stability and growth to Everton during his time in charge while his greatest achievement saw him lead the club out at Wembley in the 2019/2020 Vitality Women’s FA Cup final, a game that The Blue Girls lost 3-1 to Manchester City after extra-time.
This season has been difficult for Kirk with his multi-national squad needing to gel quickly with a harsh opening run of fixtures which has included Manchester City, Chelsea and Arsenal. Sadly for Kirk, he watched on as his side lost all three of those big games and it was revealed yesterday that he has left his position, a 5-1 midweek defeat at Manchester City in the FA Women’s Continental League Cup presumably being a decisive factor.
Everton are looking to appoint a new head coach before the club’s next fixture on 3 November and a BBC source yesterday revealed that former Lyon coach Jean-Luc Vasseur is thought to be in the running for the job. The Daily Mail followed up on this rumour last night, indicating that Vasseur could sign a two-and-a-half-year deal with The Blue Girls this week.
Just who is Jean-Luc Vasseur? Here are three things that you may not know about the French coach.
Vasseur has 20 years of coaching experience
Vasseur started out on his coaching journey in the youth system at Paris Saint-Germain. He spent a decade with PSG, working in one of the very best academies in both French and European football. After leaving The Parisians, Vasseur coached in the top three tiers of the men’s game. He first joined Créteil, a side who he had also represented as a player in the late 1990s. Vasseur spent three years with the club, helping them to the Championnat National title in 2012/2013.
In 2014, Vasseur took charge of top flight side Stade de Reims where he spent just one season. While he kept the club in Ligue 1, they were relegated to Ligue 2 the year after his departure. Short spells with Paris FC and Châteauroux followed before Vasseur moved into the women’s game with Lyon in 2019.
Vasseur’s first year with Lyon saw them continue their dominance of the women’s game with the club retaining their UEFA Women’s Champions League and French Division 1 Féminine crowns while they also lifted the Coupe de France Féminine, Trophée des Champions and the Women’s International Champions Cup. Last season was a disaster though with Lyon losing their grip both domestically and in Europe and as a result, Vasseur was sacked in April.
Everton would be hiring a former Coach of the Year
Vasseur’s achievements in his first year at Lyon saw him collect a whole host of personal accolades. He picked up the UEFA Women’s Coach of the Year award, the Women Soccer’s Women’s World Manager of the Year award and the IFFHS World’s Best Women Club Coach award.
The French coach proved that he can do it in the women’s game given his record in 2019/2020 but last season’s disaster will be a serious concern to Everton fans if Vasseur is deemed to be the man to take the club forward.
Vasseur a master of reinvention?
Vasseur sees himself as an adaptable coach and someone who is always looking to reinvent himself. Those qualities would need to shine bright if he was to be appointed the new head coach of Everton. The 52-year-old would have to adapt to working overseas for the first time in his career in a new league with a new culture and develop a new language, a big task for even the very best coaches in world football.
Reinvention would also be important. Vasseur would need to implement his playing style and beliefs on the Everton team with the expectation that the club begins to become more competitive against the leading sides in the Barclays FA Women’s Super League. Vasseur holds his self-reinvention in high regard and his ability to change, adapt and learn from past lessons following that difficult second year at Lyon would certainly be put to the test.
At this early stage, no other names have been paired with the Everton job, although every fan has their own opinion on who should be appointed.