Football West has announced Perry Ielati as its new General Manager – Football.
Ielati is a well-respected figure in WA football, having played for 15 seasons at Perth Soccer Club including a decade in the first team.
He will now oversee all of Football West’s football operations.
“I’m very excited to be getting back involved in football,” Ielati told Football West.
“When I was playing the governing body was still Soccer West Coast. But it has transformed into a much bigger body which caters for all areas of our game.”
Ielati’s role with Football West will involve leading a diverse team across all areas of football operations in WA. This includes Competitions and Clubs, Regional Football, Participation and Programs, Policy & Advocacy and Operations Support.
“What I have quickly realised in my first week, is that the team here takes care of an extraordinary amount of work,” he said.
“The challenge for me will be to find ways this can be completed more effectively, efficiently and to the highest possible standard. We need to strive for excellence in everything we do. My immediate priority will be to support the existing Football West team and enable them to do their best work.
“There are a number of competing priorities and stakeholders to satisfy, so it’s going to be interesting to find that balance. I’m very keen to get on the ground and speak to as many people as possible.”
Ielati was inspired by the chance to help shape the sport in WA.
“There are so many opportunities for football in the state and I want to make sure there is a good foundation in place to capitalise on these opportunities as they arise,” he said.
“As well as looking after our clubs and participants on a day-to-day basis, there is the opening of the State Football Centre, the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup, and the Football Futures Foundation which while in its infancy, is already making a positive impact on communities. It is thrilling to be involved.
“I previously worked in IT and more recently spent the last 13 years in the wealth management space. After selling my practice in late 2020, I took the opportunity to further my qualifications. I returned to full-time study and recently completed my MBA at UWA and became a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (GAICD).
“Over the last 12 months, I had time to reflect on what I love and where I could add value and my mix of football and business experience brought me to this junction. I want to put that background to good use.”
As a defender between 1996-2006 – under coaches such as Gary Marocchi, Aldo Trinca and Graham Normanton – Ielati enjoyed plenty of highs at Perth SC.
“We won quite a lot of trophies and they were really good times. After I left the club and had kids, they went into different sports so I haven’t been as closely involved. But I still get to games and see the old faces. And although my two daughters are currently playing basketball, I’m confident I’ll soon have them using their feet!”
Football West CEO Jamie Harnwell sees Ielati as a great addition to both the Football West team and for the wider sport.
“Perry is a familiar face to people who have been in and around WA football for a few decades and only last month he figured in an Azzurri legends game against Floreat Athena. He knows football and the people in the sport.
“But he comes into the role with a strong business background and a clear vision of where Football West wants to go.
“It is terrific to have him in the role and he will provide great leadership to the Football West team and deliver for the WA football community.”