Scotland: Shelley Kerr confirmed as Anna Signeul's replacement after Euro 2017

Shelley Kerr at Hampden Park
University of Stirling are fourth in the Lowland League in Kerr's third season in charge

Shelley Kerr says she has realised one of her career goals after being confirmed as Anna Signeul's successor as Scotland Women's head coach.

Signeul, who has been in charge since 2005, will leave after this summer's Euro 2017 finals in Netherlands.

"As a young girl, and being extremely passionate about Scotland, it was my ambition to represent my country," said Stirling University manager Kerr, 47.

"Now to get the opportunity to lead the national team is a dream come true."

Kerr, capped 59 times for Scotland, began her coaching career while playing for Kilmarnock in 2004 and she had spells in charge at Hibernian and Spartans.

She looked after the Scotland Under-19s from 2009-13 and led her side to the European Championship finals.

Kerr went on to take charge of Arsenal Ladies, winning the FA Women's Cup twice, before becoming the first female manager in British men's senior football when she was appointed by her present Lowland League club in 2014.

"I have never hidden the fact that I have always been very ambitious as an aspiring coach and I have tried to give myself as broad a skillset as possible to help me achieve my goals," she told the Scottish FA website.

"My time as manager of Stirling University was extremely beneficial to my personal and professional development."

When she takes charge in June, Kerr will inherit a side who will have taken part in their first major finals, with England, Portugal and Spain their opponents in Euro 2017 Group D.

Scotland boss Anna Signeul
Anna Signeul is leaving to coach Finland after 12 years as Scotland boss

"Anna Signeul has done a fantastic job throughout her 12 years in the role and has really changed the perception of the girls' and women's game in Scotland," said Kerr, who led her current side to the British Universities Championship final as well as top-five finishes in the Lowland League.

"We have a great group of players and my goal is to continue the good work and sustain the level of success that the team has achieved in recent years."

SFA performance director Malky Mackay said that naming Kerr now would give her time to prepare for the 2019 World Cup qualifiers, which start only four weeks after the end of the Euros.

Mackay, who will be joined by Kerr at the qualifying draw in Switzerland on 25 April, said: "Shelley was the outstanding candidate for the position.

"She has a wealth of experience in international football, in the club game and as the first female manager in British senior men's football.

"She is a deep thinker of the game but also has a huge passion for football and that shone through during the interview process. We are confident that she will hit the ground running."

Mackay hoped that Kerr would build on the "fantastic job" done by Signeul, who has agreed to manage Finland.

For the World Cup qualifiers, Scotland will be seeded in Pot B along with Belgium, Netherlands, Iceland, Denmark, Austria and Russia.

Top seeds Germany, England, Norway, Sweden, Spain, Switzerland and Italy are in Pot A.

The Scots continue their preparations for the finals with a friendly against Belgium on 11 April in Leuven.

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