Chelsea Women FC have appointed four new members of staff to enhance our already successful coaching team.
Bart Caubergh becomes head of performance, Lisa Fallon takes on the role of game analysis and strategy coach, Brede Tokvam comes in as head of fitness and Steve Hockham is our new physiotherapist ahead of the 2019/20 season.
As head of performance, Caubergh will be in charge of managing all staff, including co-ordination across departments and overseeing the individual programming of every player.
He comes with extensive worldwide experience and holds a UEFA-A coaching licence plus a master’s degree in sport science. In the past 10 years, Caubergh has worked for six teams and one national team in seven different countries.
His most notable achievements include playing a role in winning the league championship and Super Cup with Belgian club KRC Genk, being part of the qualification stages with Iran for the 2014 World Cup and assisting in winning promotion to the Russian Premier League with KS Samara in the 2014/15 season.
Hayes said on the appointment of Caubergh: ‘Bart is our new head of performance – it’s an extensive job, managing across departments to make sure we function at our best level.
‘He’s got unbelievable experience, all over the world. He’s worked exclusively in men’s football, and this will be his first role in women’s football, but we were first introduced six years ago.
‘I’m part of the World Football Academy group, which meets once a year, and he’s part of it too. I’ve seen him work in that capacity and I’ve always thought that I would like to work with him at some point. He’s meticulous, exactly what we need.’
Fallon has become a prominent figure in Irish sport while building up vast knowledge within the men’s game over the past 10 years. She has most recently been at League of Ireland Premier Division side Cork City, working as head of football analysis and as a coach, and she is the only female coach to work in the men’s professional game in Ireland.
A UEFA Pro-Licence coach, she made history in 2013 when she became the first woman to manage a men’s team in Ireland when she took over at amateur side Lakelands FC. She has also worked with the Northern Ireland men’s national team and is currently a pundit covering the Women’s World Cup for Irish channels.
Chelsea’s new game analysis and strategy coach will be part of the technical group with her responsibility to analyse and work with players tactically.
On being appointed, Fallon said: ‘The opportunity to come to Chelsea is fantastic and I’m really excited about the project and Emma Hayes’s plans.
‘I’m excited to have the opportunity to bring some of the experience and knowledge I have developed over the years to the women’s game.’
Manager Emma Hayes said: ‘Lisa’s been doing great things in Ireland. She’ll bring a wealth of experience to the position and I think she’s another fantastic hire by us. She’s a super person and her drive and determination to succeed for us is massive.’
Tovkam, who takes on the role of head of football fitness, has been a coach in Norway for almost 10 years. His most recent role was with Norway Premier Division side SK Brann, where he has been working as a coach with the Under-23s team for 18 months. The UEFA A-Licence coach holds a bachelor’s degree in Coaching and Sports Psychology and has previously worked under ex-Chelsea defender Erland Johnsen from 2014 to 2018 when he was an analyst for Norway’s youth national teams.
Hayes said on the appointment of Tovkam: ‘Brede will bring experience with his knowledge of the periodisation to assist with the football fitness for the team. This will help take us to a new level and I’m looking forward to have him on board.’
Chelsea’s new head of football fitness said: ‘This will be my first role within women’s football but one I am really looking forward to.
‘Just looking at the Women’s World Cup now and comparing the level from a few years ago, it has improved dramatically. It’s a really exciting time for women’s football and I can’t wait to be a part of it at Chelsea.’
Our new physiotherapist moves over to the women’s team from Chelsea’s Academy. Hockham worked at Cobham for three years as a part-time physiotherapist before returning in January 2019 as a full-time Academy physiotherapist.
He has been working in the industry for 20 years and like Hayes’ other appointments, he holds a considerable amount of experience in his area of expertise. He spent 13 years at Watford when they competed in the Championship and also has valuable WSL knowledge having worked at Birmingham City Women.
On his new role, Hockham said: ‘As a practitioner and someone who has 20 years of experience in football, there is nowhere else that I could be and enjoy more.
‘I thoroughly enjoyed my time in women’s football before, so the opportunity to stay with Chelsea at an elite level is a no brainer really.’
Hayes added: ‘Steve will be a great addition to our team, he has many years of valuable experience and his knowledge is second to none. I have no doubt that he will ensure that our players remain in the best physical state possible throughout our upcoming campaign.’