Football Coaches Australia presents ‘The Football Coaching Life Podcast’ S2 Ep 5 with Gary Cole interviewing Catherine Cannuli

Football Life Podcast Cannuli

Catherine Cannuli has recently been appointed as Head Coach of the W-League team at Western Sydney Wanderers after spending a number of years as Assistant Coach after she finished up her playing career at the Club.

Cath had a terrific playing career as a junior and senior player, becoming a 15-year-old first-team player at Marconi before also playing W-League football with Sydney FC and Brisbane Roar, as well as receiving four caps for the Matildas.

Her coaching career began at Southern Districts with the Raiders before quickly adding the U14’s and eventually the Technical Director role. Catherine is open in discussing how great the Association have been in helping her grow and develop as a coach and in allowing her to juggle her coaching role at WSW whilst learning to understand the demands of full-time coaching.

We discuss the impact that Alen Stajcic has had on her career as both a player and a coach as well as how he helped her ‘fall back in love with the game’ after she walked away from the game and the national junior teams.

In her role as TD with Southern Districts she is focused on helping players love the game first as well as trying to fit in more games and training sessions to provide more learning opportunities for players and coaches.

It becomes very evident that Catherine wants to leave a legacy for the W-League program at Wanderers where all players, coaches and staff are full-time.

Please join me in sharing Catherine Cannuli’s Football Coaching Life.

FCA President Gary Cole discusses glaring AFC Pro Licence issue affecting many top Australian coaches

The AFC Pro Licence is still not recognised by UEFA and this issue has been an ongoing battle for many years.

Despite professional coaching badges, years of experience and on-field success, coaches are exploiting loopholes in order to acquire these roles in Europe that clubs clearly believe they are qualified for.

Many top coaches like Ange Postecoglou and Kevin Muscat have battled through many obstacles like job title changes and being unable to take training or sit on the bench for matchdays just to accept offers in Europe.

Football Coaches Australia President Gary Cole discussed the frameworks that are set in order to fix this issue whilst also communicating the many obstacles in place that are currently halting the process.

“The discussions, I’m going to say started at least 5 years ago, Glenn Warry, the inaugural FCA CEO encouraged to Football Australia voraciously to work on that,” he said.

“The truth is that UEFA clearly don’t believe that an AFC pro Licence is as good as theirs because Australian-Asian coaches go to Europe and their qualifications aren’t recognised which doesn’t make a whole bunch of sense.

“Football Coaches Australia will try to influence Football Australia to push for change, it’s very difficult to get the AFC to do so but our legal team has sent a good amount of time writing to FIFA, but they don’t recognise coaching associations.”

David Zdrilic’s story is quite fascinating with the current Sydney FC assistant coach spending around $20,000 on a qualification that was not recognised in Europe. If you factor in flights and accommodation, the outlay was closer to $30,000 as he had to return from Germany four times to complete it. The FCA worked with  Zzdrillic through this interesting period where he worked for the likes of RB Leipzig and Genoa on different job titles to escape trouble. However he wasn’t the only coach to have troubles with this system in Australia recently.

“David was one of the many people that Glenn Warry helped through this process because it’s a challenge. Essentially what they’re saying is, yep you have a certificate that says you have a pro licence, but you need to prove to us that you really are a pro licence coach and that can take many forms,” Cole said.

“I think Muscat ended up, after having to sit to get around it, his club in Belgium called him a Technical Director and initially he couldn’t even sit on the bench for matchdays.

“They eventually got around that and they got to a point where his previous experience gets ratified because they sit down with him, interview him and realise this guy knows what he is talking about. They don’t give him a pro licence, but they give him a letter that says ‘you’re ok to work in Europe’.

“So many Aussie coaches go through it, Kevin [Muscat] went through it, Ange went through it, David Zdrillic didn’t have a pro licence, got a job offer in Italy and couldn’t accept it because his credentials weren’t recognised”

When asked if Australian coaches succeeding in Europe would help force the issue on this situation, Cole mentioned that there was still a lot more that had to done outside of that for it to pass.

“Success will cause change to one degree. Obviously if Ange succeeds it will say we have done something right but that’s a one off,” he said.

“When you start to add up the volume, so you’ve got Ange’s success, now Tanya Oxtoby who’s manager of Northern Ireland women’s national team but like Joe Montemurro they both got their UEFA pro licences whilst spending time abroad and that adds another string to the bow.

“Question is should we be encouraging Australian coaches to plan to go to Europe to get into the UEFA coaching course but that’s really expensive because you have to fly over and take time off work etc.

“We’d like to think no but the reality is today that it would be a better option for those who have the capacity and the willingness to work at that level.

“There are people working to try and fix that but given the organisations involved, I don’t perceive that it will be a quick fix by any means.”

It remains an extremely interesting discussion that has accelerated into a bigger issue in recent years as more Australian coaches start succeeding domestically and in Asia which leads to the bigger job opportunities in Europe that they aren’t qualified for due to this incredible rule.

2023 FIFA review underlines incredible Women’s World Cup impact

FIFA has released their ‘2023 Financials in Review’ statement which highlights the incredible financial and cultural impact of the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup.

The FIFA Women’s World Cup heavily contributed to FIFA’s television broadcasting success with the body’s revenue total reaching AU$408.4 mil. The coverage was exceptional with the tournament being shown in over 200 territories by 130 broadcasters and in all other markets thanks to the FIFA+ platform. In order to provide for the ever-growing popularity of the women’s game, FIFA has adapted its media rights sales strategy by taking a more comprehensive and detailed approach to the market.

The skyrocketing television audiences have been replicated on FIFA’s digital platforms. Traffic in the tournament surpassed the entirety of the 2019 tournament within 12 days, welcoming 22 million unique users, with an average of 2.4 million users visiting FIFA Women’s World Cup channels daily.

The biggest source of income was the sale of marketing rights from commercial partnerships, which delivered AU$697 million, more than 101% over budget. FIFA successfully renewed record long-term partnerships with Hyundai/Kia, Qatar Airways and Visa to cover the Women’s World Cup and 2026 Men’s World Cup. A total of 30 sponsors signed up for the 2023 Women’s World Cup, up from 22 in the 2019 edition and they were duly rewarded for that.

Hospitality rights and ticketing sales for the FIFA Women’s World Cup amounted to AU$65.7 million, another record that the tournament smashed.

FIFA benefited from a strong demand for ticket and hospitality packages for this unique tournament, which also set a new Women’s World Cup record with nearly two million tickets sold, smashing their target of 1.5 million that was set in 2019 after the previous edition.

The average attendance rate across the tournament’s 64 matches was 87% with the highest crowd being 75,784 fans packed into a sold-out Stadium Australia to watch the Spain-England final.

Football Australia and the subsequent State federations all have the same focus in terms of making sure they successfully leverage the home World Cup and surpass their KPI’s.

In Football Australia’s One Football Framework, it states that they want to ‘reshape the game for Women and Girls’ which will start by aligning their digital and data strategies to be more focused on women which is similar to FIFA’s successful approach.

Recently the ‘Play our way’ program shows the government’s commitment with them providing $200 million in grants to improve sporting facilities for women and girls around Australia in the hopes to create a solid base for future growth.

The Legacy ’23 investments into Football that will amount to AU$296 million, will be key in maintaining growth and talent development as the A-Leagues sort out issues with professionalism and club finances that are affecting both the Men’s and Women’s game.

The success of the recent u20’s Young Matildas Asian Cup can’t be underestimated either in terms of the bright future this country is showing. A third place finish and bronze medal was the best ever finish from a Young Matildas side in the competition, with the squad featuring four players under the age of 18, one of the youngest in the competition.

These statistics by FIFA show that women’s football is experiencing a surge of interest and recognition, and the framework set out by Football Australia can ensure that is success is sustained long-term and positively affects participation at grassroots level.

Most Popular Topics

Editor Picks

Send this to a friend