8 May 2014

Clermont appoint female head coach

7:29 am on 8 May 2014

Portugal's Helena Costa will be the first woman in charge of a men's professional football team in France after she was named Ligue 2 side Clermont Foot's head coach.

Costa, 39, is the current manager of the Iran national women's team, having scouted for Celtic and managed the Qatar national women's team.

Clermont are 14th in Ligue 2 with two matches to go.

In the late 1990s and early 2000s, France had Nelly Viennot as the first woman to be assistant referee in an elite match.

Viennot also served as assistant referee in Champions League games.

In Germany, referee Bibiana Steinhaus officiates in second division games.

She is the first woman referee in the second Bundesliga and the first to have been a referee in the German Cup.

In Spain, Maria Jose Claramunt is the director of the national team, responsible more for marketing than sporting issues.