By Neto Baptiste
Technical director for women’s football, Lisa Cole, said the decision to leave the role was a tough one but she is pleased with what she has achieved in a tenure vastly disrupted by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Speaking with Observer media, Cole confirmed that she will be taking up the head coaching role for the Fiji senior women’s team, and added that she is looking forward to the new challenge.
“I really feel like torn because I love my time here and I feel like we’ve made a lot of progress here between the women’s league, being with the women teams, playing and training on a regular basis. So, it’s hard and it’s always hard to leave when you’ve enjoyed your time in a place and so right now I feel a little bit conflicted so I am also looking forward to a new challenge and a new opportunity,” she said.
Cole recently tendered her resignation to the Antigua and Barbuda Football Association (ABFA) as she prepares to take up her new role in Fiji. She is reportedly set to leave within the next week.
Head of women’s football and Vice President of the ABFA Gwen Salmon said the fraternity is dismayed by the development but wishes Cole success in her endeavours.
“First of all I am saddened by Lisa’s departure and that she is leaving, so it is a bittersweet moment for all of us here who are involved in the women’s programme but I am also happy for her at this time because she is moving on to better things. She has done a great job for the time she has been here and we have accomplished a lot of great things in the fixed term that she was to be here and it has exceeded all expectations,” she said.
Salmon, who is also an elected member of the Caribbean Football Union (CFU), said a decision will be made on the way forward with the programme in short order.
“She has left a solid foundation that we have to build on, so the technical department will regroup and we will see the areas where we need assistance. She has done a lot of work with the coaches and I am confident they can take up more leadership roles within the programme so we will have to meet and regroup,” she said.
Cole, a former coach with the USA women’s under-17 team, was appointed to the role in September 2019 with her tenure set to end in December this year.