Bridge to coach Canada women’s U-20s


OTTAWA — Ian Bridge was named head coach of the Canadian women’s under-20 soccer team Thursday.

Bridge, who served as an assistant with both the women’s national and U-20 teams this year, will lead Canada at the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup next month in Chile.

Bridge was head coach of the Canadian entries at the U-20 World Cups in 2002, ’04 and ’06.

He takes over from Bob Birarda, who has parted ways with the Canadian Soccer Association. In a release, the CSA said the departure was a mutual decision that both sides agreed was in the best interest of both parties.

Canada won the CONCACAF women’s U-20 championship in June. Canada also won the Four Nations tournament in Chile last month.

Birarda, who also served as coach of the Vancouver Whitecaps women’s team of the United Soccer Leagues, has parted ways with that club as well. In a release, the team said that current staff members would handle his duties on an interim basis, adding Birarda’s departure was a mutual decision.

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