Hege Riise to lead Team Great Britain at Olympics

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Hege Riise has been appointed as head coach of Team Great Britain for the Tokyo Olympics, the English Football Association (FA) announced on Wednesday.

The former Norway international was appointed to lead England in their February camp after Phil Neville left to join Inter Miami with the FA planning on appointing a further coach "in due course."

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Riise is an Olympic, World Cup and European Championship winner with 58 goals in 188 appearances in her time with the Norway national side.

"We are going to win," Riise said at a press conference on Wednesday. "I am pretty confident that when we pick the team, it will be the team we want and we will be successful.

"We always want to aim for the big medal and of course we look for opportunity to be the best team. That's what we need to prepare for."

Players and home nations football associations have expressed concern in the past about Team GB's hiring process favouring English players as it is run by their FA.

"We have been watching all the games. We have a list of players we are watching," Riise said when asked if she had been monitoring players outside of the English camp.

"I think that's the benefit I have coming from outside. I can pick the players I believe can go to the Olympics."

However, the FA's director of women's football Sue Campbell said the majority of the squad will be English.

"I can assure you we are watching them carefully. We are analysing them technically," Campbell added of the other home nations players. "We value and respect them as home nations."

Riise was appointed alongside ex-Canada international Rhian Wilkinson to the England job with their short-term contracts keeping them with England until Sarina Wiegman takes over on a permanent basis in September.

Wilkinson will also assist Riise with Team GB and both women will continue their interim roles with England.

Neville had been due to lead Team GB -- which consists of players from England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland -- at the Olympics but the FA had to scramble to find a new appointment after he left.

Since retiring from playing she helped LSK Kvinner win six consecutive league titles in Norway's Toppserien and has also worked with the USWNT as an assistant coach. She was nominated for FIFA's Best Coach of the Year in 2020.

Team GB are returning to the Olympics after missing qualification for the 2016 Games in Rio.

The side qualified for Tokyo through England's run to the 2019 Women's World Cup semifinals.

The draw for the Games will happen on April 21 with nine qualified teams confirmed so far.