Aston Villa take up option to extend manager Carla Ward’s contract

Carla Ward will remain Aston Villa manager through to the end of the 2023/24 season after the club announced it had taken up an option to extend her contract.

The 39-year-old joined Villa from rivals Birmingham ahead of the 2021/22 season and guided her side to a ninth-place Women’s Super League finish.

Villa have enjoyed a bright start to the current campaign and are seventh in the table, with a 4-3 victory over Continental League Cup holders Manchester City among the highlights so far.

Ward’s side recorded their fifth league win last Saturday with a 2-1 home victory over Tottenham and have also qualified for the Conti Cup quarter-finals.

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Ward has also overseen several impact signings including the August transfer of Lioness Rachel Daly, currently the WSL’s joint top-scorer, from Houston Dash on a three-year deal.

More recently the former Sheffield captain bolstered her ranks by adding former Arsenal midfielder Jordan Nobbs, who has 69 caps for England, during the January transfer window.

Aston Villa’s head of women’s football Lee Billiard, said: “This is terrific news for Carla and the club. We have seen significant improvement in the team under her leadership and this contract extension will allow her to continue progressing and building on our strategy to develop the game.”