Nothing personal as Herdman chooses Canada over England

Thu Jun 25, 2015 12:24am EDT
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By Steve Keating

VANCOUVER (Reuters) - John Herdman had a choice to make in 2013 -- continue as the head coach of Canada and guide them to a Women's World Cup on home soil or return home with the goal of taking charge of the England side.

The 39-year-old made his decision and on Saturday will lead out Canada against his homeland in a tasty quarter-final showdown at B.C. Place.

The ever-smiling Englishman said two years ago he was intrigued by the possibility of coaching his home country and would listen to any offers put to him.

A few weeks later, though, he signed a four-year contract extension with the Canadian Soccer Association that will see him remain in charge of the women's national team through 2020.

For Herdman, the choice was based as much on quality of life as career goals and he dismissed any suggestion that his close links to both countries would provide added motivation for anyone on Saturday.

"You just have to look out your window in B.C. and see the mountains and the lakes and the sunshine," he said following a training session on Wednesday.

"Where would you rather be? Where would you want your kids to grow up?

"The reality is all we are thinking about is beating a team. That's it.   Continued...

John Herdman gives instructions to his players at BC Place. Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports - Oct 28, 2014;