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Portland Thorns reportedly hiring Rhian Wilkinson as next head coach

(Photo by Buda Mendes - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)

The Portland Thorns have reportedly tabbed Rhian Wilkinson as the club’s next head coach, according to The Athletic.

Sources have said that Wilkinson, who made one appearance for the Thorns in 2015, will succeed Mark Parsons as manager for the 2022 season.

Wilkinson was a staple on the Canadian national team, winning two bronze medals in the 2012 and 2016 Olympics. She retired in 2017 after 181 appearances with the team. Since then, Wilkinson has spent time as an assistant for Canada and leading the U-20 and U-17 programs.

Earlier this year, she spent some time on England’s coaching staff alongside Hege Riise.

Previously, the Thorns announced the hiring of Karina LeBlanc as general manager. According to The Athletic, LeBlanc participated in the final rounds of interviews. Both LeBlanc and Wilkinson played together on the Canadian national team. One source also said that Thorns players were involved in the hiring process.

The Thorns aren’t expected to make an announcement until the season is over.

Current head coach Mark Parsons is set to depart the team upon conclusion of their season to coach the Netherlands national team.

The Thorns are set to play the Chicago Red Stars in the semifinals of the NWSL playoffs on Sunday with their sights set on the final in Louisville.