Eileen Gleeson named head coach of Ireland women's football team

Following her success as interim coach, Eileen Gleeson has officially been appointed head coach of the Irish women's football team.

The image shows newly appointed Ireland head coach, Eileen Gleeson. She is standing on a soccer pitch in front of a crowded stadium looking out to the distance. She has short cropped red hair and is wearing a suit jacket and white shirt buttoned up to the collar.
Image: @GleesonEileen via X

The Football Association of Ireland (FAI) has officially appointed Eileen Gleeson as the permanent head coach of the Republic of Ireland women’s soccer team.

Following the FAI’s decision not to renew the contract of former boss Vera Pauw, Gleeson stepped away from her role as the organisation’s Head of Women’s and Girls’ Football to take up the position of interim head coach last September.

Since then, the 51-year-old Dublin native has overseen six games with the squad, all of which they have won. The successful streak saw the team scoring 20 goals and conceding only two, resulting in them being promoted to League A of the UEFA Women’s Nations League.

Despite initially insisting that she would be returning to her role in development, Eileen Gleeson gladly accepted the new appointment, saying, “For me, there is nothing greater than being Irish.” 

She graciously continued, “To have the opportunity to lead my country on the highest stage internationally and be entrusted with the responsibility of maximising the potential of this exciting team and future Ireland players is the proudest and most humbling moment of my life to date.”


Paying tribute to the squad, she said, “Fresh from the experience of working with our fantastic players and staff during our recent UEFA Nations League campaign, and seeing all of our talented young players at underage level, there is huge potential for us to build on and to ensure consistent regular qualification for and progression in major tournaments.”

Gleeson also thanked the FAI Board and senior officials for “their trust and support” and said she is looking forward to “an exciting and busy 2024 on the road to qualification for the UEFA Women’s European Championships in 2025.”

She also expressed, “This is an extremely exciting time for Irish Women’s Football. I am truly honoured and privileged to be involved.”

With the Irish team’s recent success, they will now be ranked as one of the top seeds for the Euro 2025 qualifiers, meaning they will be guaranteed a place in the play-offs even if they finish bottom of their group.

Eileen Gleeson now faces the task of assembling a coaching and support team, with appointments to be confirmed in the new year ahead of the preparation for the qualifiers at an international camp in February.

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