United announce new management team ahead of debut WSL season
Oxford United Women are delighted to announce former United player Les Taylor as first team manager for their debut season in the FA Women's Super League 2.
Taylor started his footballing career at the U's, signing professional terms in 1974 and going on to make more than 200 appearances in midfield as well as being named captain. He moved to Watford in 1980 and captained the Hornets in the 1984 FA Cup final at Wembley before ending his playing career with spells at Reading and Colchester United.
Taylor returned to Oxford in 1992 as under-16s coach, advancing to Youth Development Officer and most recently Technical Director of the Girls' Centre of Excellence. A longstanding stalwart of the club, Les said he is pleased to be part of an exciting new chapter in Oxford United's history.
“From a personal point of view, I'm looking forward to it and I'm sure all the ladies and everyone involved are looking forward to it as well,” he said. “It's an exciting new adventure, it's the next stage. With any team that gets promotion you always look forward to the challenge, so it's a massive challenge for us. There will be lots of ups and downs – hopefully more ups than there are downs.
“As with anybody, they need a bit of leadership and I can offer them a wealth of experience. I've experienced some big success at clubs, I know little things which may help them develop more and I know different tactics which may help them when we play against teams who may occasionally be better than us.”
Richard Blackmore will continue to oversee the women's WSL project as general manager, while Jonny Edmunds is in charge of the development squad. First team coach Kieran Hayes, goalkeeping coach Alan Foster and strength & conditioning coach Joseph Collins will also work with the side this season. Additional members of the WSL management team include Head of Women's Sport Science Luke Taylor, Head of Medical Amy Cranston and psychologist Darren Barber.