VFL staff changes

The Williamstown Football Club can announce some key changes since the end of the VFL season. 


2019 Line Coaches Matt Pearce, Clay Illman and Clint Proctor have all taken up opportunities within AFL-aligned Clubs Footscray, Richmond and the Northern Blues respectively which as a Club we have fully supported all three in their moves to continue their development in coaching. 


Meanwhile Senior Assistant Coach Peter Banfield has taken on a Coach Director role at Wesley College which not enable him to continue with the Club. 


Headlining their replacements is former Williamstown 200-game player and Team of the Century member Saade Ghazi who takes on the Senior Assistant role whilst former Hawthorn premiership player Clinton Young will become midfield coach replacing Matt Pearce. 


Young has been coaching Gisborne in the Bendigo league for the past three seasons. 


Having coached the Western Magpies in the QAFL for the past three seasons, Brydan Morgan will replace Clint Proctor as our Forwards coach; Morgan has also spent time with Aspley in the NEAFL and is currently undertaken his Level 3 Coaching Course. 


Lachie Harris will replace Clay Illman as our Backs coach. Harris was previously involved with Collingwood AFLW / VFLW and has been in various coaching roles in Queensland and WA over his journey. 


Gaetano Faranda has joined the Club from Box Hill Hawks who replaces Calvin Pane in our High Performance Staff with Calvin taking on a more senior role in overseeing all of the Club’s high performance staff. 


Faranda has also spent time overseeing the Western Jets program prior to his time with Box Hill. 


Dr. Tom Cooney replaces Dr. Michael Ryan as Club Doctor with Dr. Ryan taking on a role with Melbourne AFLW / VFLW following 12 months at the Club. 


Dr. Cooney has spent time with Uni Blues in the VAFA along with Southport Sharks in the NEAFL. 


“Matt, Clay, Clint and Peter have provided great support for our players during their time, especially Clay who had been involved for four seasons,” GM-Football Stephen Soulsby said.


“To have the three of them move into AFL Club ranks we are really proud to assist their journey and alongside Dr. Ryan shows a strong pathway between VFL and AFL from a staff perspective. 


“Their tireless work ethic and the relationships they built with our playing group was highly valued and we wish them all the best with their future endeavours.


“During the past three seasons we have now seen eight of our staff move into AFL clubs which is a credit to the hard work they did with us and also acknowledgement of the Club being able to foster not only players but staff to AFL level,” Soulsby added.


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