Mark Parsons named next coach of Dutch national women’s team

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — Mark Parsons was named the next head coach of the Dutch women’s soccer team on Thursday and will succeed Sarina Wiegman after the Tokyo Olympics.

The 34-year-old Parsons, who currently coaches the Portland Thorns in the U.S. National Women’s Soccer League, will take over after Wiegman leaves to coach the England women’s team. Parsons’ contract runs through next year’s European Championship in England and the qualification campaign for the 2023 World Cup.

Parsons has big shoes to fill in the Netherlands. Wiegman led the Dutch to victory at home in Euro 2017 and to the final of the 2019 World Cup, where they lost to the United States 2-0.

The Dutch soccer association, known as the KNVB, said Parsons will combine his work as national coach with his position in Portland until the end of the U.S. season.

Under Parsons, Portland won the NWSL Shield in 2016 and the NWSL title a year later. Earlier this month, the team won the NWSL Challenge Cup.

“I’m super happy with this fantastic job,” Parsons said in a statement released by the KNVB. “In recent years, this team has written history and inspired football fans throughout the world with their play and the way they present themselves off the pitch.”

Thorns general manager and president of soccer Gavin Wilkinson said in a statement on the club’s website that the organization remains “100% committed to the 2021 season with Mark at the helm and appreciate the way in which this has been managed from the KNVB and Mark.”

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