Hannah Dingley: Forest Green appoint first woman to run men's English football academy

Hannah Dingley
Hannah Dingley, who had been with Burton since 2013, will celebrate her 36th birthday on Friday

Hannah Dingley has become the first woman to manage a club academy in English men's football after being appointed by Forest Green Rovers.

Dingley, 35, holds a Uefa Pro Licence and joins the League Two club from Burton Albion where she was academy head of coaching.

She will work closely with boss Mark Cooper to develop first-team players and lead on creating a women's academy.

"I'm really excited. It's the perfect blank canvas," Dingley said.

"We have a first-team manager who really wants young players in his squad and plays the game with a distinctive style.

"We have some great talent in the academy and my focus will be on doing everything we can do give them the best chance at first-team football."

Dingley has also coached at Nottingham Forest, Leicester City and Lincoln City.

Chairman Dale Vince said: "Hannah is a great addition. She has the experience, passion and skill to really drive our academy onward, giving our young players their best shot at first-team football.

"There's a good cultural fit too; we share an interest in innovation, in looking to improve and do things differently, and a fearless approach when it comes to breaking the mould. That's very FGR."

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