Freyr Alexandersson has been appointed the new women's coach of Iceland on a two-year deal.
After Siggi Eyjólfsson ended a tenure that began in 2007 after leading Iceland to the UEFA Women's EURO 2013 quarter-final, the Football Association of Iceland (KSÍ) turned to the 31-year-old Alexandersson, who has been coaching men's first division club Leiknir.
Alexandersson made his name as a coach with Valur Reykjavík's women's side, assisting Elisabet Gunnarsdóttir in 2008 and 2009 – winning the title both years – before stepping up the following year and retaining the championship. He then switched to become assistant coach of Valur's male team before moving to Leiknir, where he will remain in charge.
He takes over a team transformed by Eyjólfsson, qualifying for their first major tournament at UEFA Women's EURO 2009 and then making it past the group stage in Sweden in July. "I have coached many of the players who have been in the team in recent years and think I know fairly well what I am going into," coach Alexandersson said. "I do not feel that I am under any pressure – it probably kicks in later. First of all I feel this is a great opportunity to make it to the finals. I am very excited that I can stay on as Leiknir coach too."
The finals Alexandersson hopes to make are those of the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup in Canada, a tournament Iceland have never previously made. They start their qualifying campaign at home to Switzerland on 26 September, with UEFA Women's EURO semi-finalists Denmark, Serbia, Israel and Malta also in their group.
"We are in a great group with strong teams and have a good chance of challenging for first place," Alexandersson said. "I will not make any drastic changes before the first game but they may come later. Now I have to study the Switzerland squad and how they play."
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