Phoenix appoint A-L Women head coach

·1-min read

Wellington Phoenix have appointed Gemma Lewis as the club's inaugural A-League Women's head coach.

Lewis, a former Wales international, joins the Phoenix after establishing her coaching credentials in New Zealand's junior female system.

An assistant for the Football Ferns at the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup, Lewis has also coached New Zealand's under-20 women's team and was on the coaching staff for New Zealand's bronze-medal winning team at the 2018 under-17 women's World Cup in Uruguay.

"This side is such an important part of the women's pathway in New Zealand, especially in the lead up to the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup on home soil," Lewis said.

"I'm especially looking forward to giving young players their first taste of professional football as we announce our first signings over the coming weeks and prepare for our first game on December 3."

Joining Lewis will be assistant Natalie Lawrence, her current assistant with New Zealand's under-20 side.

The pair are just the second all-female coaching staff at an A-League Women's club alongside Canberra United.

The Phoenix were granted entry into an expanded 10-team competition just last month and are set to travel to NSW soon where they will be based for the start of their inaugural campaign.

Their first fixture is scheduled to be against Western Sydney as part of a double-header alongside the Phoenix A-League Men's team.

The club is expected to announce their first player signings later this week and is attempting to acquire exemptions for Auckland-based coaches and players in order to allow them travel to Wellington to train before the team's departure to Australia.

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