Man United women hire ex-Orlando Pride coach Marc Skinner

MANCHESTER, England (AP) — Marc Skinner was hired as manager of the Manchester United women’s team on Thursday, less than a week after he resigned as coach of the Orlando Pride.

The 38-year-old Skinner signed a two-year contract as the replacement for Casey Stoney, who left to become coach of the National Women’s Soccer League’s expansion team in San Diego. His deal includes an option for a third season.

Skinner, who joined the Pride in early 2019 and was 9-11-23 as coach, takes over a United squad that finished fourth in the Women’s Super League.

“Our focus is to build on everything they have already achieved in the women’s game,” Skinner said in a statement. “It’s an exciting opportunity to lead the team into what will be another competitive WSL season. I want us to achieve success together and our aim is to give the fans a team they can continue to be proud of.”

Stoney, a former standout for England, led United to a 52-6-19 record during her three-year tenure as manager. The team won the FA Women’s Championship in her first season and gained promotion to the WSL.

Skinner has experience in the WSL with Birmingham, where he became first-team manager in 2016. A year later, he led the squad to the FA Women’s Cup final, losing to Manchester City 4-1.

United executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward noted Skinner’s “proven pedigree” in the WSL.

“Our commitment to the continued development and success of the women’s team is total, and we see Marc’s appointment, along with the talented squad and players recruited this summer, as key to that process,” Woodward said.

United, which narrowly missed qualifying for the Women’s Champions League, opens its season by hosting Reading in early September.

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