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Thorns, Parsons confirm that coach will leave after 2021 season

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Parsons will join the Dutch Women’s National Team after the 2021 season.

SOCCER: AUG 03 NWSL - Sky Blue FC at Portland Thorns FC

Portland Thorns FC’s coach Mark Parsons has accepted the position as the manager of the Netherlands Women’s National Team. He will continue coaching the Thorns through the 2021 NWSL season and will leave at its conclusion.

“This is not what we were expecting to be managing at this stage of the season however collectively we are in agreement with Mark’s decision as it is best for him and his family,” Thorns FC general manager and president of soccer Gavin Wilkinson said in a press release. “We remain 100% committed to the 2021 season with Mark at the helm and appreciate the way in which this has been managed from the KNVB and Mark. The process for hiring a new head coach will start in the coming months and we plan to appoint the next head coach at the conclusion of the season.”

“The Thorns are the pinnacle of club football and over the last six years I have had the distinct privilege of calling Portland my home,” said Mark Parsons. “I am incredibly thankful for the support and understanding of Merritt [Paulson] and Gavin [Wilkinson] throughout this process. They truly treat this team as family and their leadership continues to set the standard. I am more focused and committed than ever to helping our players and staff reach our goals and bring joy to our fans this season.”

The news was reported earlier this month first by RTV Utrecht out of the Netherlands and then confirmed later by Meg Linehan of The Athletic. Parsons has experienced much success during his time in Portland, winning the NWSL Championship, the NWSL Shield, and the NWSL Challenge Cup all during his time here.