Willie Kirk: 5 Interesting FACTS about the coach who slept with his player

Former Leicester City manager Willie Kirk was dismissed by the WSL club

Willie Kirk: 5 Interesting FACTS about the coach who slept with his player

Hassan Abdulsalam 08:01 - 12.05.2024

Leicester City relieved Willie Kirk of his duties as head coach after it was revealed that he had a romantic relationship with one of his players.

Former Leicester City manager Willie Kirk was dismissed by the WSL club over a romantic relationship with one of his players.

The former Scottish Cup winner was sacked by Leicester City in December 2023.

Pulse Sports reported that Kirk told Daily Mail, "One of the players contacted me away from work to express their feelings for me. I said “that is ridiculous” and just shut it down. That was that."

Here are 5 intriguing facts about Willie Kirki:

From Youth Coach to WSL Manager

Willie Kirk's journey in football management did not begin on the sidelines but on the pitch itself, playing for Preston Athletic.

His coaching career took off in 2006 when he became an assistant academy coach for Livingston FC's under-14 team.

He quickly rose through the ranks, eventually leading all age groups to the under-17s. In 2009, Willie made a pivotal move to Hibernian, initially as an academy coach, but his talent was soon recognized, and he was appointed head coach of the women's team.

His tenure at Hibs was a period of remarkable success. He secured them a Scottish Cup win in 2010, followed by a League Cup victory in 2011.

Two years later, Hibs finished runners-up in the league, and Willie himself was crowned Scottish Women's Football Manager of the Year.

After a stint as the Scottish FA's High-Performance Football Manager (2014-2016), Willie returned to club management with Bristol City Women.

He led them to promotion to the prestigious Women's Super League (WSL) in 2016 and then steered the team to consecutive eighth-place finishes in the top league.

In 2018, he joined the coaching staff of the newly formed Manchester United women's team but soon took on the manager's role at Everton later that year.

In 2022, Willie's career took another turn when he joined Leicester City as their Director of Football for Women and Girls. His responsibilities included overseeing on-field performance, developing the academy, and fostering a positive team environment.

He then transitioned to the role of Women's First Team manager permanently after Lydia Bedford's departure in November 2022.

Leicester WSL escape overshadowed by uproar

Despite the precarious situation, Kirk led Leicester on a remarkable turnaround, securing their place in the WSL for another season.

Unfortunately, these achievements were overshadowed by the revelation of his relationship with a player.

Willie likes to play Golf and cook

Beyond football, Willie is a dedicated father to his young son and enjoys pursuing hobbies like Golf, Horse Racing, and even cooking.

Kirk played non-League football

Kirk played non-league football for Preston Athletic and agreed to manage the team in the 2014–15 Lowland Football League season.

Managerial Hero to Zero

Kirk's story is one of contrasting achievements. He took over a Leicester team facing relegation and led them to safety. However, this impressive feat was overshadowed by the relationship scandal.