Next Ireland Women’s Manager Odds: Who Will Replace Vera Pauw?
Republic of Ireland produced commendable displays across their three games at FIFA Women’s World Cup, but unfortunately they didn’t upset their pre-tournament odds on betting sites.
The Girls In Green ultimately saw their campaign in the competition come to an end on July 31.
Following one-goal reversals at the hands of Australia and Canada, Ireland were already out of contention for a spot in the knockout phase of the World Cup in advance of their final Group B game against Nigeria in Brisbane.
Yet having scored their first tournament goal through Katie McCabe’s corner-kick effort in the Canadian game, Ireland picked up their first World Cup point after playing out a scoreless draw with the Nigerians.
While their African opponents were more than happy to come away with a share of the spoils given it was enough to ensure their progression to the last-16, there was solace for the Irish in the fact they managed to finish the campaign with a positive result.
After the World Cup, the FAI confirmed that a 'comprehensive review' process had begun into the team's tournament performance which ultimately lead to Pauw being told her contract would not be renewed on August 29.
Pauw’s Finished With Ireland
In the job since September 2019, manager Vera Pauw guided Ireland to their first-ever appearance at a World Cup finals with a play-off victory over Scotland at Hampden Park last October.
Based purely on footballing reasons, it would seem that Pauw had done more than enough to secure a contract extension as Ireland boss that will bring her into the forthcoming Nations League and the subsequent qualifying campaign for the 2025 European Championships.
Yet there was continual suggestion that her reign might be set for an abrupt end, which it now has, and this has grabbed the attention of bookmakers.
In addition to some off-field issues relating to her time in the US with club side Houston Dash, the relationship between Pauw and team captain McCabe has also been the subject of much discussion since the World Cup finished.
It seemed unclear what way the Football Association of Ireland (FAI) were approaching Pauw and her future within the organisation which only allowed speculation to grow leading to a lengthy board meeting to discuss the issue on August 29.
Vera Pauw has since been sacked and with Ireland's inaugural Nations League B campaign set to get underway against Northern Ireland at the Aviva Stadium on September 23, the FAI will need to provide some clarity on who will be in the dugout for that game sooner rather than later.
Elmes And Gleeson Could Be The Most Likely Options For Main Job
Before Elmes took on the role of number two, it was Dubliner Eileen Gleeson who was alongside Pauw in the Irish set-up.
She subsequently took charge of Glasgow City in the Scottish Women’s Premier League, before leaving that position at the tail end of 2022.
She did win 26 of the 30 league games that she had in charge of Glasgow however, and she is now back within the FAI as the Head of Women and Girls Football.
She was only appointed to this role in January, but it hasn’t stopped her being rated as the 5/4 favourite for the next Republic of Ireland women’s manager.
Eileen Glesson shot to favouritism after she was appointed interim head coach of the team, previously assistant coach to Vera Pauw with Ireland it is easy to see why she heads the market here.
Since Pauw is now out of the picture, it might be a case that the FAI opts for continuity after what has been a very memorable period for the team.
Tom Elmes was appointed as the Republic’s assistant manager in advance of two World Cup qualifier games in November 2021 and also doubles up as Irish U16 women’s supremo.
A man with knowledge of the domestic scene from his successful spell with Wexford Youths, Elmes is viewed as a 2/1 second-favourite with football betting sites in the event of Pauw’s job becoming available.
Neville In The Running Along With Former Irish Boss Bell
A little further down the list of potential candidates are a brace of coaches with international experience to their name.
Recently relieved of his duties as Inter Miami boss in America’s MLS, Phil Neville was previously in charge of the England women’s team for three years and guided them to the semi-final stage of the 2019 World Cup in France.
His son Harvey picked up a cap with the Republic of Ireland U19s in the same year (through the Irish ancestry of his mother) and the six-time Premier League winner with Manchester United is rated as a 4/1 prospect with new betting sites to be the country’s next WNT head coach.
Pauw first came on the radar of the FAI when the senior job became available in the wake of Colin Bell’s resignation in the summer of 2019.
The English native’s time as Huddersfield Town men’s assistant manager didn’t pan out as he might have hoped, but he was quickly back in women’s international football with South Korea in October of the same year.
He also guided the Asian nation to this year’s World Cup, but - like his former side - their campaign won’t extend beyond the group stages of the tournament.
It is difficult to gauge if Bell would be interested in a return to Ireland, but he is priced at 5/1 nonetheless.
Fallon And Duff Could Also Be In The Reckoning
A trailblazer who has worked in men’s football with Northern Ireland, Cork City and Galway United (becoming the first female head coach of a professional male side in either Ireland or the UK with the latter), Lisa Fallon could also be in the reckoning to manage her native country if the opportunity arises.
Currently working with FIFA’s Global Football Development Division, Fallon had a previous stint with the London City Lionesses and is worthy of consideration as a next Irish manager at 7/1.
Though he doesn’t have experience within the women’s game, Damien Duff is someone who would be a high-profile appointment for the FAI and could bring the team to new heights.
Formerly a member of Stephen Kenny’s backroom team with the Irish men’s national team and currently in charge of League of Ireland men’s outfit Shelbourne, he is an 8/1 possibility for the role.
His ex-Ireland team-mate Roy Keane is an outside bet at 14/1 for a return to management with the Republic of Ireland women, while their former international managers Mick McCarthy and Brian Kerr are rated at 40/1 and 50/1 respectively.
Powell And Veurink Amongst A Group Of Alternatives
A technical director at Birmingham City after ending a five-year spell as Brighton & Hove Albion manager in October 2022, Hope Powell was previously England women’s manager from 1998 to 2013.
She might have her eye on a return to international coaching and at 10/1 with betting apps, she could be an option worth considering.
As assistant managers go, Arjan Veurink has one of the best CVs within the women’s game.
He has been number two to Sarina Wiegman for European Championship successes with his native Netherlands and England in 2017 and 2022 respectively and is a viable option at 12/1 following England's recent World Cup final appearence.
There is always the possibility that the FAI could return to another of their past managers and, with this in mind, Noel King (who had a decade in charge of the WNT from 2000-2010) is listed at 16/1.
Further down the list, former Charlton Athletic and Liverpool full-back Paul Konchesky is rated at 20/1 having recently departed Women’s Super League outfit West Ham United.
Finally, one of the most decorated Republic of Ireland internationals with 134 senior caps (and with countless club honours from her time at Arsenal), Emma Byrne is also seen as a potential managerial option at 25/1.
* Reminder: These are hypothetical odds provided by industry experts.
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