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Edmondson named Vixens Manager

Bristol Academy have today announced Melbourne Victory's Dave Edmondson as the new Vixens Manager

Bristol Academy Women's Football Club has today unveiled Melbourne Victory’s Dave Edmondson’s their new head coach. Edmondson was appointed following the departure of Mark Sampson, who took up the role as England Women’s National Team Manager in December.

Dave Edmondson joins the Vixens following their most successful season in the club’s history, finishing runners up in the FA Cup Final against Arsenal in May and capping a superb season by finishing second in the 2013 WSL season which qualified them for the 2014/15 UEFA Women’s Champions League. Edmondson will join the squad in time for pre-season training before the new season begins in April 2014.

Edmondson was born in Manchester, but has earned an outstanding reputation in New Zealand and Australia because of his ability to develop young players. Edmondson was at the helm when New Zealand became Oceania Champions at U17’s and oversaw their U17 World Cup side in 2010. This experience will be invaluable at Bristol Academy who are renowned for their commitment to developing home-grown talent.

After working with New Zealand, Edmondson was appointed Head of Women’s Football in South Australia and Head Coach of Adalaide in the Australian W-League – the equivalent of the FA Women’s Super League. Further promotion in 2013 found Edmondson as Technical Director of Football in Victoria, a post which placed him in charge of all football in the Australian state and Head Coach of Melbourne Victory who are sitting at the top of the league along with Sydney FC, with three games to play.

President of Bristol Academy WFC Kevin Hamblin commented, "We had some over 100 applications, it was a difficult job to reduce these to six candidates who were invited to an interview. In the end it was clear that the right fit would be Dave because of his experience overseas working with elite players which meant that he could come and look after the first team and more importantly make sure that every phase of the athlete pathway is as robust as it can be."

Speaking about what he can bring to the team, Dave Edmondson said, "I applied for the Bristol job as it offered the type of club structure and development opportunities that I believe are required to be successful. Having experienced the women's game both in New Zealand and Australia, coaching teams at the FIFA under 17's World Cup and in the very competitive Westfield W League, I have a good knowledge of the developments in the women's game around the world. In particular the technical, possession based playing style of the Asian teams, allied to the very athletic and physical Australian and New Zealand styles elements of both which I will bring to Bristol."

Edmondson arrives in Bristol at the beginning of February to build on the platform created by his predecessor and to take on the challenges of an ever strengthening league. With WSL teams adding depth to their squads with big close season signings, Edmondson's knowledge and experience within the female game could be a decisive factor for the Vixens in the coming season.