Carla Ward appointed Women's Head Coach

The Club is delighted to announce the appointment of Carla Ward as Blues Women's new Head Coach.

Ward takes charge after a successful spell at Sheffield United Women.

Blues can also reveal that Charlie Baxter has been appointed Assistant Head Coach.

And we also welcome back Tony Elliott as Goalkeeper Coach after a spell at Bristol City Women.

Completing the Blues backroom staff is returning Coach, Jenni Foster, Strength & Conditioning Coach, Holly Pickett and Physiotherapist, Chloe Needham all of whom have been vital members of the set-up over the past season. 

Ward, 36, was the inspiration behind Sheffield United's challenge for Championship promotion last season. The Blades were in second place when the season was curtailed due to Coronavirus.

Nominated for Coach of the Season, she joined Sheffield United initially as player/assistant in 2016 and was instrumental in helping the Club achieve their FA Women's Championship licence in 2018.

During her 18 months as Manager at Sheffield United she took charge of 58 games, winning 34 of them, drawing seven and losing 17 with an impressive win average of 58.62 per cent.

Ward, who recently received her UEFA A Coaching Badge, has a wealth of playing, coaching and management experience spanning several decades. 

The new Blues Head Coach said: "This is a massive opportunity, Blues is a massive Club with a great history.

"I'm a people person with a holistic approach that is very much based around the player.

"I'm a big believer, particularly in my playing days, if we've got the players smiling and confident and buying into what you've got to do then you've got half a chance.

"Straight away it's about getting the players together and kicking on."

Sarah Westwood, General Manager for Blues Women, said: “We’re delighted to bring Carla to the Club. 

"From the moment we first spoke, she impressed us with her ambition and work ethic. Her values and standards match perfectly with ours.

"I know the fans will get behind Carla and the team and we are looking forward to being able to welcome them back into the stands as soon as it is safe to do so.  

"I also want to take the opportunity to welcome Tony back to the Club and to say a huge thank you to the backroom staff for working so hard in the interim."

During her playing career, Carla turned out for Bristol Rovers, Sheffield FC, Lincoln City, Leeds United, Sheffield United and Bristol City, as well as Spanish side SPA Alicante.

And at an international level, the Isle of Wight-born midfielder represented both England Universities and Great Britain Universities.

Prior to her most recent roles with The Blades, she was Head of Girl’s Football with Sheffield FC and Head of Women’s Football at Sheffield University.