Racing Louisville, Björkegren agree to part ways

Racing Louisville FC will begin play in the spring of 2021 as an expansion franchise in the...
Racing Louisville FC will begin play in the spring of 2021 as an expansion franchise in the National Women's Soccer League.(Source: Racing Louisville FC)
Published: Oct. 27, 2023 at 11:18 AM EDT|Updated: Oct. 27, 2023 at 1:16 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Racing Louisville is beginning a global head coaching search as the club and coach Kim Björkegren have mutually agreed to part ways.

Björkegren will return home to Europe to pursue other opportunities, the club announced Friday morning.

“We appreciate all that Kim did for us here at Racing,” said John Neace, chairman of Soccer Holdings, the parent company of Racing Louisville. “The team showed continued improvement under his leadership. We wish him the very best in his next position.”

In an Instagram post, Björkegren said it was a decision he made about a month ago. He said that his wife and son moved back to Europe and the distance was difficult for both him and them, leading to the decision to step away from the club and move across the Atlantic to be with them.

Despite the decision coming a month ago, Björkegren said he and the team had agreed not to say anything until after the season came to an end.

“I want to say thank you for two great years,” Björkegren said. “It has been a lot of hard work, but I’m now happy to leave the club in a better position from when I came to Louisville. I want to say a special thanks to the owners, especially John Neace and his family, and thanks to the president James O’Connor, the staff and, of course, to the players. Thanks to the fans and to all the people who make Racing and Louisville a great place. After many years abroad, it’s now time to go back home to Sweden with my family.”

For Racing general manager Ryan Dell, the search for a new head coach comes at a crucial point in the offseason. Free agents are allowed to sign with new teams on Nov. 20 and the National Women’s Soccer League Draft is in the winter.

“We firmly believe we have the pieces in place to become a perennial playoff team in the NWSL,” Dell said. “Our search is centered on finding a head coach to elevate our team to that next level.”

In two years with Racing Louisville, Björkegren amassed a record of 11 wins, 17 draws and 16 losses, improving the club’s performance each year after its 5-7-12 inaugural season.