Hi Tim, congratulations on your recent appointment as head coach at Wanneroo City SC. On behalf of everyone at the club, welcome and we are delighted to have you on board .Firstly allow me to ask how you feel about your new position as head coach?
I am very grateful to the club President Dean Bell and the committee for showing faith in me to take on what I consider to be an extremely important role at the club. Having spent most of my senior footballing life at NPL club Floreat Athena, I am looking forward to the new challenge ahead.
Tim have you had a chance to meet the playing staff and coaches? What are your thoughts about the squad you have inherited?
I have met most of the committee and we had our first coaches meeting last week, which went very well. I have not had a chance to meet last years playing squads, but we are organizing a day/evening prior to training so that everyone can put a name to a face. The date of the meet and greet is to be confirmed shortly and will be posted on the club facebook page and the club website.
Do you think you will make many/any changes to your squad/coaches to help the team be more competitive in the 2017 season?
Unofficial training begins on the 6th December 2016. I will be using the six or so sessions prior to Xmas to evaluate the existing squad. Once i have had the chance to have a good look at all our current playing stocks I will be in a much better position to make an informed decision on where we need to improve the squad. I must stress that every current player will be given an opportunity to be selected in my first team squad. I do not think there will be the need for wholesale changes, but given our ladder position last season, clearly the squad needs to be strengthened. As far as the coaches are concerned, the club have already appointed a new U18s coach and are in the process of of interviewing for the position of reserve team coach. We have a number of youngsters at the club who are very keen to add to their coaching experience and it could be that one of these boys may even get the nod for the reserve team job. An announcement will be made soon.
What are your thoughts on encouraging the younger players at our club, to bring them up through the ranks into the First Team?.
The U18s. Reserves and 1st team squads will all be undertaking the 6 week pre season programme together. This will commence Tuesday 2 January 2017. During the pre season which will include Friendlies, I will be taking a keen interest in our U18s to see if any boys are ready to make the next step. As an incentive to the U18s, with the assistance of Gary, the U18s Coach, we will be selecting one or tow boys to train with the 1st squad every Tuesday to give them a taste of being part of a 1st team squad and to experience the difference in the speed of the game at that level. The boy or boys will change from week to week and selection will be based on performance, attitude and ability. Whilst I am the 1st team coach, in consultation with Gary and the Reserves Coach, we will be looking to move boys up once we are comfortable that they are ready.
Tim, would you mind telling us a little bit about your football career and what led you into coaching?
My football career stems over 40 odd years and have been with one club! Yes, that’s right, one club – Floreat Athena. My senior career with Floreat ended rather prematurely at the age of 23 after I had a crippling knee injury. In those days there was no keyhole surgery, so it took literally 18 months to fully recover. I played 3 seasons in the Floreat 1st Team as a left back and/or left midfielder and I guess the major highlight of my senior playing days was to play alongside one of England’s 1966 World Cup Winning Players, Mr Alan Ball. Alan was invited to Floreat Athena in 1982 to play four games a s a guest player by the then Gaffer, John Sydenham. Both John and Alan were close friends as a result of their long association at Southampton and John was able to convince Alan to come out. It was a memorable month and still brings back extremely fond memories of that era. Training and playing with a true legend of English Football was the biggest highlight of my short senior career. After a few years of not playing, I started to get some coaching badges and started coaching juniors. In 1985 I decided to get back into playing football and started by playing indoor soccer a couple of times a week as well as coaching juniors. In 1987, Perth entered a team into the James Hardie National Indoor Soccer League. The Perth team was know as the Perth Cougars and I was fortunate enough to be selected for the squad. For those that can remember, home games were played at Perry Lakes Stadium. That was a great experience and it was just a pity that the franchise only lasted one season, especially after playing off in The Grand Final against the Sydney Tornadoes. Basically since 1987, I have been involved in coaching almost every age group at Floreat right up to the last two seasons, where I was Senior Assistant to Glen Grostate’s 1st team in the NPL Competition. In the two seasons that Glen and I were together, we finished no lower than 4th in the league and won the Night Series in 2015 and The Coolridge Cup Competition in 2016. It was the Coolridge Cup which gave us the opportunity to progress to the FFA Cup Competition and the biggest highlight was playing Melbourne City at Dorrien Gardens in the round of 32. An amazing experience playing against an A League club in a serious competitive match, where they had all of their stars playing like Bruno Fornaroli and Luke Bratton to name a couple. Our equalizing goal in the second half is a You Tube clip I will cherish! We went on to lose 2 – 1 but nevertheless will be a life long memory.
What are your objectives for Wanneroo this season?
My objectives for Wanneroo are twofold. On the pitch, we are looking to strengthen the 1st team squad in an attempt to climb back up the ladder. Clearly the objective is to finish as high as possible and top 4 is certainly a goal in my first season. It is going to be a very competitive season in 2017 with the likes of Gwelup and Kingsway making their intentions clear but I think that there is no reason why we can’t compete with them on the pitch. Off the pitch, I will assist The Committee in every which way I can, in trying to raise the profile of the club. There are a lot of punters in the community who once upon a time were Wanneroo Supporters and we are going to try and get some of these people back to the Club. I am looking forward to being part of the resurgence of Wanneroo City and hope that all of you can be part of that too!
I would like to thank Tim for chatting to us today and letting everyone at the club have a little insight into what he can do for us this season and hopefully for many seasons to come. Be assured Tim, that you have the full support of all at The Club and we wish you the very best of luck and success this coming season.
Yours in sport