Swans brand 'will fly high'
WHILE rival codes mull over missed opportunities following this week’s announcement that Sydney Swans will set up a player academy in Coffs Harbour, AFL regional manager Mark Heaney is certain the ‘branding’ opportunities will make an extraordinary impact.
“Any day now we’ll have kids running around their local communities wearing their official Swans gear,” he said.
“And being centred on Novotel Pacific Bay Resort in the wake of Camp Wallaby and Camp Rabbitohs, the profile and prestige of the Academy will be enormous.”
Swans boss Paul Roos said research and planning will enable the Academy to infiltrate every corner of the local sporting world.
“We will try and move around a little bit so the kids aren’t travelling all of the time,” he revealed.
“Monday nights we want to make sure this is the focus with the great facilities here so the boys know they are coming to train, they are coming to prepare themselves.
“Then we’ll take it around a little bit on the Wednesday nights.”
Heaney and Roos will form a working partnership which will inject a massive pool of coaching knowledge into schools and junior clubs.
“Exactly the same coaching they get in the city is coming here,” Heaney added.
“When I started in this job I thought our first kid from Coffs in the AFL was still at least another decade away.
“But the Swans are already looking at two local kids, along with another nine who could easily end up on their list.
“It will go into overdrive even more when the Academy starts up.”
Roos will be accompanied by Adam Goodes to the launch of the Academy at Pacific Bay on February 8.