Cole’s new role

New Fiji women’s football coach Lisa Cole at the Tanoa Waterfront Hotel in Lautoka yesterday. Picture: SHIRAZ KASIM

New Fiji football women’s head coach Lisa Cole arrived into the country early Wednesday morning from Los Angeles, US, after receiving her work permit from the Fijian Immigration Department.

Cole is excited about her new role with Fiji Football Association.

“I’m extremely honoured and excited to be given the opportunity to join Fiji FA as head coach for the national women’s football team,” she said.

“It feels so special to be bestowed with such an opportunity. I just feel lucky to be here and be a part of the journey for the players and the country to have an opportunity to do something remarkable.

“It’s a tough road. There are a lot of stages to it, but I think anything is possible. I’m looking forward to working with a talented group of players.”

The American national will be in the country for eight months initially with the likelihood of an extension to her contract provided the national women’s football team qualify for the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup.

She replaces former women’s national football coach Marika Rodu.

Cole, 48, was the coach of the Antigua and Barbuda women’s national football team and headed the women’s development program at the Antigua and Barbuda Football Association prior to joining Fiji Football Association.

Cole is expected to start work from early next week.

Meanwhile, the Digicel national women’s football team will participate in the 2023 Women’s World Cup qualifiers in July, possibly at the ANZ Stadium in Suva.

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