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Jobs4Football meets Lee Taylor

Jobs4Football spoke to coach Lee Taylor, who is applying his trade as a coach in Australia, about his time working in the Land Down Under, how he has developed as a coach during this time and his ambitions of coaching in Asia.

Taylor has been coaching in Australia since 2017 when he started as a U14’s Head Coach and in the five years he’s been there he has worked as a head coach and assistant coach, which is the role he currently operates for the first team and U18s at Gwelup Croatia Soccer Club.

The Perth-based club competed in the NPL Western Australia and Taylor joined the team back in May this year as he looks to build on the positive strides he has already made in the country.

Speaking on his current role, Taylor said: “It is a great opportunity for me, in Australia, we have a lot of clubs from different backgrounds and cultures, and obviously my current team is built around Croatian culture so it has been a good experience working with different people, a different culture, and so I get to see things from a different perspective. It has been interesting going into that sort of environment and having to quickly get a grip of a different way of working, but it’s a challenge I’ve enjoyed.

I pride myself on being adaptable whilst also seeing myself as a good people person and so I will try to use these skills along with my previous experiences in coaching to help the club progress and help develop some of the talent at the club.”

It was at his previous club, Rockingham City Football Club, where Taylor had his best moments to date as a Head Coach for the U20s before going on to become Head Coach of the first team. In his year with the youth set-up, Taylor oversaw the promotion of 70% of the squad to first-team football minutes in the 2020 season.

In July 2021 he was the assistant to the first team when the club decided to promote him to the head coach role for the remainder of the season. The team were rock bottom of the league, adrift of safety, and despite not being able to quite overturn the 8-point deficit, the team under Taylor were able to take it right to the end with impressive results in the last nine games giving the club a fighting chance in what looked a hopeless situation.

When talking of his time at Rockingham and his development in coaching, Taylor went on to say: “Despite not quite staying up I was immensely proud of the reaction I got from the boys for the final part of the season and we unfortunately just ran out of games, if there had been a few fixtures left I would have backed us to stay up. I had worked with a lot of the boys before in the U20s, so I already had built this relationship with them, which is vital if you are to succeed as a coach, it was a situation I was thrown into but I can stay calm and level headed, so the transition wasn’t too bad for me.

Australian football is still in its infancy stage, its completely different to England in terms of players, coaches, and competition but there is a lot of potential because mostly the facilities over here are excellent compared to some other countries so now it’s just about getting the players as competitive as possible and bringing monetary value to the game over here, which hopefully I can play my part in helping with.”

Whilst also being in the early stages of his coaching career, the former semi-pro has obtained a vast amount of experience coaching in Oceania, and Taylor has his eyes set north for the future with the assistance of Jobs4football,

“My aim is to make my way back to Europe but I have a big interest in the eastern Asian countries like Japan, Korea and Malaysia where there are big football environments and just seeing the size of the clubs over there and the passion they have for the game is something that appeals to me. Over here a lot of the games from those countries are shown on TV and so I already have some level of understanding of the game over there and I see it as a future place for me to progress as a coach.

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