Canada Soccer announces departure of Women’s National Youth Team Head Coach Rhian Wilkinson

Wilkinson was hired as Canada Soccer’s Women’s National Youth Team Head Coach in August 2019

Canada Soccer have announced that Rhian Wilkinson will leave her role as Head Coach of its Women’s U-20 and U-17 National Teams and as Assistant Coach of the Women’s National Team.

Wilkinson was hired as Canada Soccer’s Women’s National Youth Team Head Coach in August 2019. Upon her retirement as a player in 2017, she worked for Canada Soccer’s Elite Player Elite Coach programme, before serving as Head Coach of the Vancouver Whitecaps FC Girls Elite program, which served as one of three Canada Soccer Super Excel Centres across the country. With the Women’s National Team, she was an Assistant Coach at the 2020 Concacaf Women’s Olympic Qualifying Tournament, at the 2018 Concacaf Women’s Championship and at the FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019. She also served as Head Coach at the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup Uruguay 2018 when Canada posted a best-ever fourth-place finish.

“Canada Soccer would like to thank Rhian for her many years of dedication and commitment to our Women’s National Team Program as both a player and staff member,” said Dr. Nick Bontis, Canada Soccer President. “As part of a core group of veteran players who transitioned through Canada Soccer’s Women Leading Women legacy initiative of the FIFA Women’s World Cup Canada 2015™, the two-time Olympic bronze medalists’ contributions as a coach at both the Youth and National Team levels will be felt for years to come. We wish her the best of luck in her future endeavors.”

As a player, Wilkinson spent 15 years on the Women’s National Team and won the 2010 Concacaf Women’s Championship as well as back-to-back Olympic bronze medals in 2012 and 2016. In all, she participated at four FIFA Women’s World Cups, three Olympic Football Tournaments and won medals at all six Concacaf tournaments and all three Pan American Games in which played. A six-time Québec Soccer Player of the Year, she made 181 international “A” appearances and recorded seven goals and 23 assists.

“This was not an easy decision as this team has been my family for the past 20 years and I plan to continue to learn and grow in the next stage of my career,” said Rhian Wilkinson. “I wish Head Coach Bev Priestman and the entire women’s team every success and I look forward to watching this incredible team kick on to even greater heights than they have already achieved.”

Guidelines for the Return to Soccer

Canada Soccer outlines return to soccer guidelines. The return to soccer guidelines provide member organizations with a five-step process, including a checklist of weighted questions known as the Return to Soccer Assessment Tool.