McPherson named Suburbs coach

Eastern Suburbs coach Malcolm McPherson directs his team during the 2015 Chatham Cup final. Photo: Shane Wenzlick / www.photosport.nz

Eastern Suburbs have confirmed Malcolm McPherson as the club’s head coach for the upcoming Premiership national league season.

McPherson, who guided Eastern Suburbs to a Lotto NRFL Premier League and Chatham Cup double last season, will be supported by former Waitakere United midfielder Martin Bullock, also a development officer with the Northern Football Federation.

The club’s National Youth League coaching team will be led by another former Waitakere United player and OFC Champions League winner in Hoani Edwards. Edwards, who is currently in Australia as an Auckland Football Federation coach at the Kanga Cup in Canberra, will be assisted by Matt Maslak.

Fitness expert Sunz Singh, who worked with WaiBOP United last season, is also part of the structure.

Club chairman Chris Ruffell is delighted with the appointments.

“Of the five-strong coaching staff charged with guiding our two top-tier teams, four have been drawn directly from our club’s coaching staff,” he says.

“This reflects the calibre and depth of coaching resources we have put in place for our members. The strong contingent of Eastern Suburbs coaches guiding our teams also reflects our club’s commitment to providing pathways for both our players and coaches,” he adds.

“One of our key motivations for gaining entry to the prestigious national league was to ensure Suburbs provided the strongest club pathway for our members – the coaching staff appointments are just one proof point in our commitment to a strong pathway strategy.”

In the last winter season, McPherson became the first Eastern Suburbs coach to clinch a league and cup double since 1968, a gap of 68 years.

Ruffell says this, combined with McPherson’s values and attributes as a coach, made him an ideal fit for the role.

“Malcolm’s technical knowledge and ability to galvanise and harness the skills of the individual players into a cohesive team force are exemplary,” he says.

“Malcolm embraces our club’s ambitions – he’s hungry to see Suburbs at the highest level of club football in this country.”

Eastern Suburbs currently sit top of the Lotto NRFL Premier League with a gap of four points between themselves and their nearest rivals.

The draw for the 2016/17 Premiership is yet to be confirmed but the season is due to kick-off in October.

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