RIYADH: The Saudi Arabian Football Federation (SAFF) has announced the appointment of Lluis Cortes as the new women’s national team head coach. The Spaniard succeeds Rosa Lappi-Seppala on a four-year contract until 2027 and was unveiled at an official ceremony in Riyadh this afternoon.
“Lluis was the outstanding candidate to lead our women’s national team in this exciting new era and we are thrilled to have finalized this important appointment,” said Yasser Al-Misehal, president of the SAFF.
“We believe Lluis’s coaching capabilities, knowledge of the game, and extensive experience will play a huge role as we look to maintain our sustained and steady progress in the years ahead. He is a deep thinker and is looking to develop the long-term strategy so I’ve no doubt he will make an important impact upon Saudi women’s football on and off the pitch. We’re really looking forward to working with him.”
The most impressive achievement of Cortes’ career to date came in the 2020/21 season as head coach of Barcelona Femeni. Widely regarded as one of the greatest campaigns in women’s club football history, he led the side to a continental treble by winning the Primera Division, Copa de la Reina, and UEFA Women’s Champions League.
Following his two years in charge at Barcelona Femeni, where he also won another Primera Division title, one Supercopa de Espana, and the UEFA Women’s Coach of the Year award, he managed the Ukraine women’s national team from 2021-2023.
“Being confirmed as Saudi Arabia’s new women’s national team head coach is a real privilege,” said Cortes. “I want to thank the Saudi Arabian Football Federation for this wonderful opportunity to work in a country that loves the game so much and is really growing football for all. The prospect of working with such an ambitious and energetic group of young players is really exciting and I will look to incorporate my philosophy of attractive and attacking football on our journey together.”
“The team’s progress in such a short space of time can only be described as incredible,” he continued. “Already there is much to be proud of and a lot achieve. The grassroots are flourishing, a new Under 20 national women’s team announced and the Women’s Professional League is developing fast. So, I am confident the future is even brighter as we have all the ingredients to climb up the FIFA rankings.”
“The aim is to keep working, keep improving, and take further steps toward our aim of competing at the highest level internationally. This is why I’m here and I can’t wait to meet the players and get started.”