Sweden's Marika Domanski-Lyfors is set to become the next coach of the Chinese national women's soccer squad if imminent talks in Beijing go well, a state press report said Saturday.
"There is no concrete time set but I will definitely soon be in Beijing for face-to-face negotiations," the Beijing Morning Post quoted Domanski-Lyfors as saying.
"So far my discussions with the China Football Association have been really good and everything up until now has gone really smoothly."
The FIFA Women's World Cup starts in six months and whoever is the women's coach will be under huge pressure after Chinese sport officials set the squad a minimum target of a semi-final finish.
"I was under a lot of pressure when I coached Sweden to the finals of the last World Cup, so I know I can clearly face it all," Domanski-Lyfors said.
Domanski-Lyfors, recently described in the Chinese press as "tougher than any male coach", led Sweden to the 2003 World Cup final which they lost to Germany.
She stepped down after nine years as Sweden's coach in 2005 but still works for the Swedish Football Federation and coaches the under-21 side.
Domanski-Lyfors is reportedly the only candidate for the post of the currently troubled 'Steel Roses', as China's women's team is known.
The side has been on a downward spiral for months and last week lost its caretaker coach who stepped down just two months after the head coach abandoned the squad citing ill health.
Last week the squad returned from Europe in disgrace, having lost six games in a row, including defeats to Iceland and Finland.
photo Dan Vernon
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photo Dan Vernon