Manchester United Women manager Casey Stoney announced her departure from the club earlier today.
“It has been an honour to lead the women’s team at this great club and this has been an incredibly tough decision,” she said. “Having come on board to start the team from scratch, then winning the Women’s Championship in our first season, we have now successfully established the team as a force in the Women’s Super League.
According to The Guardian, players were informed of her decision shortly before the announcement and caught completely off guard by the news. Stoney has been in charge since 2018, when the women’s team was first founded, and guided the team to a fourth place finish in their second season in the Super League this year. The team narrowly missing out on a Champions League spot for next season.
“I have loved leading this group and I am proud of what we have achieved together. However, after a difficult season with disruption caused by the pandemic, I now feel the time is right to take some time away and for someone else to come in and lead the team on the next stage of its journey,” said Stoney. “I want to thank the club, all of the fantastic staff, the fans, and most of all the players, for the incredible experience we have shared over the past three years.”
Casey Stoney: What’s Next?
There is speculation she could be eyeing a move to her old club, Arsenal, who also need a new manager. The Gunners announced that Joe Montemurro would be stepping down as club manager after this season back in March. She’s also a top contender to take over as England manager as Phil Neville will leave the post this summer.
But what about Manchester United?
Stoney led Manchester United Women through uncharted waters as a new team that was just establishing itself in the Super League. No doubt her departure comes as a shock. United’s Football Director John Murtough said, “Manchester United is completely committed to its Women’s team and to building on the legacy of Casey’s achievements as we move forwards.
“With the recent historic first game at Old Trafford and the impact the team has made in the Women’s Super League, the future is bright. While we will be sad to see Casey leave, the team and the operation will continue to go from strength to strength.”