Chelsea’s next manager Sonia Bompastor is three-time Champions League winner who shares outstanding record with Pep Guardiola and Zinedine Zidane
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Chelsea’s next manager Sonia Bompastor is three-time Champions League winner who shares outstanding record with Pep Guardiola and Zinedine Zidane

Apr 12, 2024

After the success Chelsea Women have enjoyed under Emma Hayes, it would be easy to think that no successor could come close.

But Sonia Bompastor would suggest otherwise.

Bompastor picked up 19 goals in 156 appearances for France

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Bompastor picked up 19 goals in 156 appearances for FranceCredit: Getty

The current Lyon manager looks set to be confirmed as the replacement for the departing Emma Hayes at the end of the season.

Hayes, who leaves to take over as manager of the US Women’s National Team, has presided over a 12-year period at Chelsea which has seen them win a record six WSL titles, as well as five FA Cups and two League Cups.

But Bompastor is no stranger to making history herself.

The 43-year-old has been the manager at Lyon since 2021, but previously spent eight years as a coach at Lyon’s academy.

Before that, she enjoyed a 13-year playing career which saw her play for clubs including Lyon, PSG and Washington Freedom.

It was with Lyon that she had the most success as a player, picking up over 100 appearances across two spells, and winning the French title six times.

With Lyon her success has continued as a manager, including setting a record which will cement her name in the history books forever.

The 43-year-old is the only woman ever to have won the Champions League both as a player and as a manager.

Bompastor lifted the European trophy at Craven Cottage in 2011...

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Bompastor lifted the European trophy at Craven Cottage in 2011…Credit: Getty
...at the Olympiastadion in Munich in 2012...

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…at the Olympiastadion in Munich in 2012…Credit: Getty
...and at the Juventus Stadium in 2022!

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…and at the Juventus Stadium in 2022!Credit: Getty

The former midfielder won the competition twice during her playing career with Lyon in both 2011 and 2012, beating Turbine Potsdam and then FFC Frankfurt.

But having taken over as manager of the French club in 2021, she then helped Lyon to Champions League glory yet again, but this time as the boss, beating Barcelona 3-1 in 2022.

The fantastic achievement meant she joined a group of just seven men who have earned European glory both as a manager and as a player.

Miguel Munoz, Giovanni Trapattoni, Johan Cruyff, Carlo Ancelotti, Frank Rijkaard, Pep Guardiola and Zinedine Zidane have all helped their sides to victory in this competition both on the pitch and from the sidelines.

Zidane – who achieved the feat most recently – won the Champions League as manager of Real Madrid for the first time in 2016, having already won it as a player with the same club in 2002.

He went on to win it with Real Madrid as a manager twice more in 2017 and 2018.

Meanwhile, Guardiola will be hoping to add to his Champions League tally yet again this season.

The current Man City manager won what was then known as the European Cup in 1992 while playing for Barcelona – but has since gone on to win it twice whilst managing Barcelona and once more as manager of Man City.

Three Champions League trophies for Zidane while managing Real Madrid

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Three Champions League trophies for Zidane while managing Real Madrid
Former Barcelona midfielder Pep won as a player in 1992...

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Former Barcelona midfielder Pep won as a player in 1992…Credit: Getty Images – Getty
...and will be going for a fourth Champions League trophy as manager this season

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…and will be going for a fourth Champions League trophy as manager this seasonCredit: Getty

Bompastor’s European record bodes well for a Chelsea side who have still not quite managed to crack the Champions League.

Their nightmarish 2021 second-place finish, losing 4-0 to Barcelona, is the closest they have ever made it under Emma Hayes, although she will be hoping to change that in her final season.

Meanwhile, Bompastor still has the chance to add to her already-glittering career with Lyon.

Her side take on PSG in the semi-finals of this year’s Women’s Champions League with the possibility of a final clash against her future side, Chelsea, looming.

The irony of course being that the woman who is about to take on the job of leading Chelsea to future greatness becomes the architect of their downfall for one last time.

You can tune into talkSPORT’s Women’s Football Show on Mondays from 7pm on talkSPORT 2.

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