HOWELL, N.J. – Sky Blue FC has named Freya Coombe as interim head coach and announced the hiring of additional coaching and training staff, the National Women’s Soccer League club said Wednesday.
Iouri “George” Vichniakov will serve as assistant coach and player development advisor and Marcia McDermott will serve as technical advisor.
Hugo Macedo, who directed Sky Blue to a 4-2-4 record while overseeing game-day responsibilities, will return to his role as goalkeeper coach and work closely with Coombe.
“I’m grateful to management and ownership for the opportunity to coach such a great group of athletes and professionals,” Coombe said. “Sky Blue has made a lot of progress this year, and I’m looking forward to formalizing my role, working hard, and continuing that momentum.”
Added Sky Blue general manager Alyse LaHue: “These professionals have been working with the team over the past few weeks and the players have responded really well. We look forward to a strong end to the season with continued progress and positive results.”
Coombe joins Sky Blue FC from the New York Soccer Club, where she served as the director of scouting and a Development Academy coach. NYSC is an official Girls Development Academy partner of Sky Blue FC.
Coombe played five years at Reading FC in England, a club that is performs in the Barclays FA Women’s Super League. She also coached at the club for seven years, serving as the director of coaching for the Reading FC Centre of Excellence and as the women’s development team manager for the Reading FC Women.
Coombe holds USSF B and UEFA B licenses and is progressing towards her USSF A license.
Iouri “George” Vichniakov
Vichniakov was the head coach of the Jersey Express of the Premier Development League, now known as USL League Two. He compiled a 47-18-15 record over four years as head coach and then as sporting director. During his tenure, the Jersey Express were 2014 Mid-Atlantic Division and Eastern Conference champions.
Vichniakov served as the director of coaching and player development at New York Chelsea FC. He holds USSF B and UEFA A licenses.
McDermott brings a wealth of experience from the college to professional level as a coach and as an executive. She won a championship as a head coach with the Carolina Courage of Women’s United Soccer Association and served as general manager for the Chicago Red Stars of Women’s Professional Soccer.