Arsenal Women have confirmed the appointment of Kelly Smith to Jonas Eidevall’s coaching staff. Smith was added to the coaching staff for the last two months of last season and will again form part of the coaching staff this season, working mainly with the attackers.
New signing Alessia Russo, like many current players, considers Smith her childhood idol and the chance to work with her was a key consideration in joining the club from Manchester United this summer.
Smith is widely considered the finest British female footballer of all time and spent much of her playing career with the Gunners, who she also supported growing up.
Kelly joins Rene Slegers, who was appointed this summer, setpiece coach Patrik Winqvist and Aaron D’Antino and goalkeeper coach Seb Barton on Eidevall’s immediate staff.
‘I grew up an Arsenal fan and was fortunate enough to play for the club for a number of years, so I’m delighted to be back in this capacity – it’s a dream come true for me to be back in this environment,” said Kelly. “I’m really excited to be working with the attacking players in the squad and I want to draw on my experience both at Arsenal and across the game to contribute to us achieving our goals together.”
Head of Women’s Football Clare Wheatley said: “There are few people who understand what it means to represent Arsenal Women like Kelly Smith, so we are delighted to confirm that she has joined us as assistant coach. She will bring a breadth of experience at the highest level of the women’s game and we believe our players will benefit greatly from her input on the training ground, with Kelly focusing specifically on our attacking group.”