Kim Brandao was named the next head coach of the Green Bay women’s soccer program, Director of Athletics Mary Ellen Gillespie announced on Tuesday, Dec. 29. Brandao, who most recently served as a top assistant at the State University of New York at Buffalo from 2010-2014, brings five successful years of coaching experience as an assistant coach at the Division I level and over five years of international and professional playing experience.
“I am very excited about the opportunity to lead the Green Bay women’s soccer program and to be a part of the Phoenix family,” Brandao said. “I would like to thank Director of Athletics Mary Ellen Gillespie for her confidence in me. During my visit to Green Bay, I could feel the energy and I am convinced this athletic department is headed in the right direction. I am eager to get started, and I’m looking forward to meeting with the student-athletes and support staff to begin building a winning culture.”
“We are excited to welcome Kim to the Phoenix family,” Gillespie said. “Having spent several years in the Mid-American Conference (MAC), I watched the women’s program at Buffalo and Kim was a huge part of the program’s success. Kim matches everything we are looking for in a head coach. She will build off the success of this season and will be an excellent teacher and mentor to our young women. This is a very exciting time for our program.”
Brandao was instrumental to the success of the history-making 2014 Buffalo team, which for the first time in program history captured the Mid-American Conference Tournament Championship and MAC regular season title. The Bulls went an astonishing 16-3-3 overall, the most-ever wins in program history, and logged an undefeated 9-0-2 record in conference as the only team to not lose a league game. Brandao’s assistance led Buffalo to its first-ever NCAA Tournament appearance, while also enjoying a 14-match unbeaten streak during the season.
Of Buffalo’s three losses in 2014, two came against top-10 nationally ranked teams in Virginia Tech and Penn State. After Brandao joined the UB staff, she helped to lead one of the nation’s best turnarounds in 2011 as the Bulls would go on to win 12 games. Three years later, the Buffalo program would reach its pinnacle in 2014 after setting multiple program records, before falling in the NCAA Tournament at Penn State.
Prior to joining Buffalo, Brandao played the summer seasons with Jersey Sky Blue (2007-2008) and the New Jersey Wildcats (2004) of the W-League. Brandao also brings international playing experience having played for Falkopings KIK in Sweden after the W-League’s 2007 season, and for C.F. Puebla in 2008 in Spain’s women’s first division. Brandao was a member of the Portugal Women’s National team from 2007-2012 and served as team captain from 2009-2012. She was a co-captain for the 2009 Algarve Cup, in which Portugal recorded their best ever performance with three wins and one tie.
She played every minute of 40 career matches with the Portugal national team after her 2007 debut. Brandao didn't come off the field in Portugal's best ever run in the 2011 FIFA Women's World Cup Qualifying campaign from September 2009 through June 2010.
Brandao was a standout defender for Rutgers University from 2002-2006, where she was a two-year captain and two-year MVP for the Scarlet Knights. She was a four-time All-BIG EAST selection and helped lead the team to their highest ever national ranking of 11.
She will become the ninth head coach in program history during the Division I era (since 1989) and the 11th head coach overall at Green Bay. Brandao inherits a team that enjoyed one of its best seasons in program history, winning 11 games (most since 1993) and ending the season with 36 goals scored (most since 1993).The Phoenix graduated a host of contributors, but also return key players including the team’s leading point-scorerHeidi Hartmann.
WHAT THEY ARE SAYING ABOUT KIM BRANDAO
“Kim is a fantastic hire for Green Bay. She has played a major role in building our program here at UB and will be greatly missed. Green Bay just gained a very good soccer mind, but an even better person. I’m excited to see the new heights Kim will take the program and have no doubt she will be successful.”
---Shawn Burke, Buffalo women’s soccer head coach.
"Kim is a great hire for Green Bay to lead the women's soccer team. She has demonstrated great success as a player and a coach. I had the privileged to play with Kim on the Portugal National Team and professional team in Spain. She is a person and player that strives to be great every day. She has made a positive impact on me as a player while in Europe. I know that she will be a great leader for the young women. I look forward to having her in the Horizon League."
---Sonia Curvelo, Cleveland State women's soccer head coach
“We are excited to welcome Kim to Green Bay. Her outstanding playing career both as a student-athlete and as a professional combined with her coaching success makes her the perfect fit here. She understands what it takes to compete at the highest level and will be a tremendous leader and mentor for the young women of our soccer program.”
--Adam Miller, Assistant Athletics Director for Development and women’s soccer sport administrator.