Casey Stoney will step down as head coach of Manchester United Women at the end of the domestic season.
The former England international took charge in June 2018 shortly after finishing her distinguished playing career at Liverpool.
Stoney led United to the Women’s Championship title, and promotion to the Women’s Super League, in the team’s inaugural season in 2018-19. They won 18 of their 20 matches and suffered just one defeat.
United finished a creditable fourth in their first season in the top flight in 2019-20 and again this term, 10 points behind champions Chelsea. They face Leicester City in the fifth round of the Women’s FA Cup on Sunday.
“It has been an honour to lead the women’s team at this great club and this has been an incredibly tough decision,” Stoney said in a statement.
“I have loved leading this group and I am proud of what we have achieved together. However, after a difficult season with disruption caused by the pandemic, I now feel the time is right to take some time away and for someone else to come in and lead the team on the next stage of its journey.
“I want to thank the club, all of the fantastic staff, the fans, and most of all the players, for the incredible experience we have shared over the past three years.”
United’s outgoing executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward said: “Casey has been a driving force behind the success of our women’s team since she joined the club in 2018. She has been an inspiration to her players and staff, to everyone at the club, and to the fans. Everyone at Manchester United thanks her for her unstinting hard work and dedication and pays tribute to her achievements. She will always be part of the Manchester United family.”
Football director John Murtough added: “Manchester United is completely committed to its women’s team and to building on the legacy of Casey’s achievements as we move forwards. With the recent historic first game at Old Trafford and the impact the team has made in the Women’s Super League, the future is bright.
“While we will be sad to see Casey leave, the team and the operation will continue to go from strength to strength.”