Skip to content

Helen Nkwocha: First female coach of a top-flight European men's team discusses her trailblazer status

Helen Nkwocha is a history maker after becoming the first female to coach a top-flight men's side in Europe; Nkwocha is caretaker boss of Faroese club Tvoroyrar Boltfelag; she tells Sky Sports News why she expects greater scrutiny but doesn't consider herself a trailblazer

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

Caretaker manager of Faroese club Tvoroyrar Boltfelag, Helen Nkwocha, says the club has shown its open-mindedness by appointing her as the first female coach of a European top-flight men's team

Helen Nkwocha may have made history as the first female coach of a top-flight men's team in Europe, but she does not regard herself as a trailblazer.

Nkwocha is in caretaker charge at Faroe Islands club Tvoroyrar Boltfelag, who - with just three points to their name - are already consigned to relegation.

The Faroese club, one of the oldest in the country, handed the reins to Nkwocha, who believes her background in youth coaching has prepared her for the additional scrutiny of leading a senior men's side.

"I don't see myself as a trailblazer, but I do know that there is a different level of scrutiny," Nkwocha told Sky Sports News.

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

Nkwocha says she is expecting a 'different level of scrutiny' after taking on the role

"It is a wonderful opportunity that you have to get paid to do your hobby. As a coach that is great.

"I just see it as me trying to do what I really enjoy doing and trying to be really good at it - and being ready for the scrutiny which you will get.

"I know that people will probably look harder at my sessions, they will look harder at how I communicate.

Also See:

"I am aware that there is a profile, an expectation when people are aware there's a female coach, a Black coach."

Her high-level coaching certificate, which she says is on par with first-team coaches, saw her rewarded with the opportunity to lead the club through the remainder of their season.

Helen Nkwocha coaching
Image: Nkwocha, whose background is in youth coaching, has also spent time coaching in the United States and China

Nkwocha, who has previously coached in the United States and China, is hopeful her experiences can inspire more female coaches.

However, she credits her career path as being down to her work ethic and ability, not anything else, and praised the mindset of her employers Tvoroyrar Boltfelag.

"I think it is an absolutely fantastic testament to the mindset of the people that have employed me," Nkwocha added.

"They employed me to work with their young players and if they didn't have that mindset they would be looking for similar [coaches] to what they had before.

"It made sense, it was just a case of people recognising how open-minded the club is.

"That's what the discussion has been, 'oh it's a woman'. To the club, I don't have think they have that perception. They just see a coach."

Win £250,000 with Super 6!
Win £250,000 with Super 6!

Another Saturday, another chance to win £250,000 with Super 6. Play for free, entries by 3pm.

Around Sky