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Sky Blue FC names Freya Coombe interim head coach

The club also announced the hiring of Iouri Vichniakov as an assistant coach and Marcia McDermott as technical advisor.

Freya Coombe, center, has been named Sky Blue FC interim head coach. (Courtesy of Sky Blue FC)

Freya Coombe has been named interim head coach of Sky Blue FC, the club announced Wednesday. Sky Blue also announced the hires of Iouri Vichniakov as both an assistant coach and development advisor and Marcia McDermott as technical advisor.

Sky Blue had been without a coach since the end of June, when the club announced the departure of Denise Reddy, who had won once in 33 matches. Goalkeeper coach Hugo Macedo had filled in on a temporary basis, but will now resume his previous responsibilities.

Coombe was most recently the director of scouting and an academy coach for New York Soccer Club. In her native England, Coombe first played for Reading FC before spending seven years coaching at various levels for the club. She has both the USSF and UEFA ‘B’ licenses, and is working towards the USSF ‘A’ license.

“I’m grateful to management and ownership for the opportunity to coach such a great group of athletes and professionals,” Coombe said in a statement issued by the club. “Sky Blue has made a lot of progress this year, and I’m looking forward to formalizing my role, working hard, and continuing that momentum.”

Vichniakov joins from New York Chelsea FC, where he serves as the director of coaching and player development, and was previously the head coach and general manager of the now-defunct Jersey Express. McDermott was the head coach of the Carolina Courage of the Women’s United Soccer Association and the general manager of the Chicago Red Stars during the Women’s Professional Soccer era.

“These professionals have been working with the team over the past few weeks and the players have responded really well,” Sky Blue general manager Alyse LaHue said, noting the coaches have already been working with the players. “We look forward to a strong end to the season with continued progress and positive results.”

Sky Blue has five regular season matches remaining in the 2019 National Women’s Soccer League season. The team next faces the North Carolina Courage September 7.

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