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The Football Coaching Life Podcast recap with Vicki Linton

Gary Cole Podcast

On Season 2 Episode 2 of The Football Coaching Life, Gary Cole interviews Canberra United head coach Vicki Linton.

It details her playing career where she featured in both Australia and the United States, before heading into coaching early. She was assistant coach to the Matildas during a World Cup, and the first coach to make the finals with Melbourne Victory.

She details her start in football at six-years-old, being the only girl in the entire junior club. After playing for the state leagues in Australia, she played for her country at the World University Games before moving to America to play college football. After this, she has played and worked four different times in the United States. “I wouldn’t be here if I wasn’t playing,” Linton says.

She explains it was in Australia where she first got into coaching, completing a level 2 coaching course in 1997. She started coaching through the state league pathways for juniors, while also working for New South Wales Football.

Linton highlights the differences in the roles of being an assistant coach compared to a head coach. Linton gave 7 players their W-League debut during the most recent season. “I haven’t had a team to coach myself since 2014,” she says. She felt like she was a much better coach than the last time she was in charge.

Linton says it’s important to build upon and implement ideas that you’ve work. “There is reflection during the season, but at the end, you get the time to look back at all the things that have worked out how you wanted and the things you have achieved,” she added.

One of the things Linton has learned during her time in US soccer, after being exposed to different environments, was the ability to improve processes and thinking. She was exposed to a talented group of colleagues who have helped her improve her analysis and professional development.

Linton says her coaching philosophy is working with the players, and having them achieve their potential, grow and develop, adding you can be pragmatic and stick to your values while achieving your goals in different ways.

“We want to be successful, but we also want to solve the problem of how do you these eleven or twenty players fit together,” she said. Linton explains that is where part of her enjoyment in football comes from. With a brand new group of players, and a new coach, it took time to figure out how it all fits together.

Linton highlights the importance of mentors and learning from different environments, even outside football. Coaching has been a hard journey, but she says it is a vocation, and there is nothing else she wants to be doing.

Cole commends her ability to get the best out of Michelle Hayman as a striker after some time away from the game. Linton elaborates that it was great to see her enjoy her football and perform on the field. “As a coach, is creating a positive learning environment,” she noted. She has learned to try to find an enjoyable workplace with people around her.

Cole mentions that Canberra United’s technical department is all women, and Linton confirms that this is the first time in W-League history where a team has achieved this.

Finally, Cole asks Linton to offer one piece of advice to upcoming coaches. “Be true to yourself, that involves knowing what you are about, knowing who you are, and being confident and strong in your convictions,” Linton concluded.

All episodes of the Football Coaching Life can be found here.

Manchester United commit to a renewable future

Renewable energy

With a shared mission of tackling climate change and creating a cleaner world, Manchester United have announced the renewal of their global partnership with Renewable Energy Group, Inc. – a leading producer of renewable fuels.

The partnership reinforces the Red Devil’s commitment to environmental sustainability through working together with Renewable Energy Group to raise awareness of the company’s biofuel products and to encourage positive environmental change among Manchester United’s global fanbase and beyond.

As one of the first football clubs in the world to launch a carbon reduction programme in 2008, Manchester United have reduced annual emissions from its operations by 2,700 tonnes since then. The club will be seeking to build on this record through its new partnership with Renewable Energy Group.

Manchester United Chief Operating Officer Collette Roche acknowledged the importance of Manchester United being a leader in environmental awareness and sustainability of the planet.

“As one of the most popular sports teams in the world, the club has a powerful platform to help raise awareness of how people can contribute towards a cleaner, more sustainable future for our planet,” she said.

“We are already an environmental leader among football clubs after 12 consecutive years of reduction in our greenhouse gas emissions. We will now work with Renewable Energy Group to explore ways of shrinking our carbon footprint further. Together, we can make a difference in the fight against climate change, and the goal of developing a greener, cleaner planet.”

Renewable Energy Group President and Chief Executive Officer Cynthia Warner spoke about the significance of enhancing awareness through the partnership with United.

“As a leading producer of cleaner, bio-based diesel, it’s a natural fit for Renewable Energy Group to partner with another sustainability-minded leader like Manchester United,” she said.

“Together, alongside Manchester United, we will amplify our simple-to-adopt opportunities for individuals and organisations to reduce carbon now.”

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.

Australian Clem Morfuni becomes owner of Swindon Town FC

Swindon Town Morfuni

Australian Clem Morfuni has become the majority stakeholder in League Two side Swindon Town FC, with an ambition of bringing in a new era to the club.

The Robins, who were relegated from League One last season and have just nine senior players contracted – including Australian Jordan Lyden – will be backed by Morfuni for the foreseeable future with the upcoming League Two campaign less than three weeks away.

Morfuni, a previous minority stakeholder in the side, founded his plumbing business Axis Services Group in Australia in 1994. It is now a globally operating business with a financial turnover of $200 million each year.

The acquisition has also signalled the end of a lengthy ownership battle for the League Two club who have fought recent financial hardships. Moreover, the club’s fans have rejoiced across social media at the sight of Morfuni’s long-awaited arrival.

In a club statement, Morfuni acknowledged the importance of having a ‘fans first’ philosophy on and off the field.

“I want to tell the fans that you’ve got your club back, a football club should be the heartbeat of the town and the local community and should be something that the whole town and surrounding communities takes great pride in,” he said.

“Without fans you don’t have a club and I want to thank every supporter (many who I have got to know personally) who have fought for their club and helped me to gain control. I know I am indebted to you and will work hard to make this club a club all our fans can be proud of.

“Last season we came last in the football league in terms of fan engagement; this season I aim to come first.”

Morfuni’s takeover of the club has ushered in a new contingent of executive and technical staff, with arrivals including Swindon Town Supporters Trust board member Rob Angus as club CEO and Ben Chorley and Ben Garner as the club’s Director of Football and Head Coach respectively.

In addition, Morfuni spoke on the significance of building a youthful side, something which bodes well for young Australians seeking a pathway into European football.

“I want a young, forward thinking, vibrant club. I want the average age of the team to come down, that doesn’t mean every player will be young because you need a balance, but I want a young side that plays an exciting style of football and create a club where top young players want to join because of the environment, the opportunities they will be given,” he said.

Morfuni’s full statement can be read here.

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