West Ham appoint New Zealander Olli Harder as new manager

<p>Harder will take over from Matt Beard who left last month</p>

Harder will take over from Matt Beard who left last month

(Twitter: West Ham Women)
16:19pm, Wed 23 Dec 2020
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West Ham have appointed former Klepp IL coach Olli Harder as their new manager to replace Matt Beard who left the club last month.

Hammers’ managing director Jack Sullivan said: "I’d like to welcome Olli to West Ham United and everyone here is very excited about his appointment.

“We had a huge number of incredibly strong candidates for this role, but Olli stood out predominantly due to his progressive coaching style and exceptional attention to detail, which is backed by strong experience and achievements in the women’s game.

“I’m confident Olli will ensure a work ethic and an organisation from the team to accompany his track record of giving young players a chance which aligns with the club’s values. He has lots of new ideas that we are looking forward to implement, and I can’t wait to work with Olli, who I believe will help us to continue the positive progress we have made in the WSL so far.”

Alongside his work at Norway club Klepp IL, New Zealander Harder, 34, has also coached at men’s Norweigan club Sandnes Ulf.

Harder, whose deal runs for two and a half years, has quite a job on his hands as West Ham are currently in a relegation battle and sit in tenth with just two wins this season.

Despite the hill he has to climb, Harder is excited to get going in the role.

He said: “I’m looking forward to the opportunity of not only working with such a historic club but, more importantly, a club that has committed itself to the development and progression of the women’s game.

“I’m relishing the challenge of moving forward the West Ham United women’s team into what will no doubt be a bright future."

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