27 May 2020 – Banyana Banyana head coach Desiree Ellis has expressed her deepest condolences to the family and friends of former head coach of the South African U20 Women’s National Team, Liesbeth Migchelsen who passed away in her home country of Netherlands in the early hours of Wednesday morning (27 May 2020) after a short battle with cancer.
She was 49.
“My thoughts and condolences go to her friends, family and those who knew her. I actually met her through former Banyana Banyana head coach Vera Pauw – the two had known each other for a very long time. Liz came to South Africa after Vera was already based here, and we worked together at Banyana Banyana. She was a perfectionist and committed to her assignment,” said Ellis.
“I know Vera is taking this very hard because they were very close as they met many years ago. Even on her last days, Vera was by her side. Liz was a hard worker and winner, she hated losing and was easily agitated when things did not go her way – such was her personality that she set very high standards. She did opposition analysis and was very meticulous and detailed in the execution of her work. She was a crazy person, full of fun. She also worked with Basetsana as their head coach. It is sad that she has left this world, especially during these difficult times around the world. May her soul rest in peace.”
Liz, as she was affectionately known, was part of the Banyana Banyana squad at their second appearance at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, Brazil.
Between 1990 and 2008, Migchelsen represented the Netherlands women’s national team 95 times in a stellar football career.
In 2013, Migchelsen was appointed as head coach of Canberra United in the Westfield W-League, helping the club secure the Premier’s Plate in her first season in charge.
The following season, Migchelsen coached United to the Championship, defeating Perth Glory 3-1 away from home to claim the W-League crown for the second time in their history.
She was also the chief analyst and scout for the Thailand Women’s National Team at the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup in France.
Rest in Peace Liz.