Planning to build on World Cup success
By GREG WHITE
THE CEO of Football Federation Australia (FFA) John O'Neill has unveiled the new Strategic Plan and corporate identity for Northern NSW Football (NNSWF).
The changes for the 122-year-old Northern NSW Soccer Federation will better align the organisation with the direction of the FFA and develop a wider range of opportunities for football across Northern NSW.
O'Neill has welcomed the proactive, committed approach to football administration by NNSWF and acknowledged that NSW, the third largest football state in Australia with 50,000 registered players, seemed destined for continued growth.
"In the wake of the World Cup, we cannot expect the euphoria and widespread interest in football that swept Australia to be maintained at those mid-year levels," O'Neill said.
"What we can do and what Northern NSW Football are doing through this Strategic Plan, is strengthening all areas of football growth and development from grassroots through to State League.
"This year will be remembered as a catalyst for an exciting new era for the game in Australia. Northern NSW Football, with a new Strategic Plan and a vibrant new identity, have embraced this opportunity and I am confident that the game in this region will experience a surge in participation as a result."
Northern NSW Football's chairman, Jeffery Green, acknowledged that O'Neill's visit to Newcastle for the announcement and as guest speaker at a gathering of leading Hunter business executives reflected the FFA's commitment to the region.
"We have a new Strategic Plan that addresses every aspect of operations of the organisation, both on and off the field, in order to effectively develop the sport across the State," Green said.
"We will continue to build on the momentum and community profile the sport has achieved in 2006 and ensure that our administration of football across Northern NSW complements the future direction of the FFA and football at a national level."
On hand were 'graduates' of the NNSWF program Jenna Tristram (Young Matildas) and Stuart Musialik (Newcastle Jets). The two players, soon to become the recognised public faces of football across Northern NSW, represent outstanding role models for younger players having started at grass roots club level and progressed to be able to represent their country.
"These are the type of young, vibrant and enthusiastic players produced by the Northern NSW Football system that will ensure the future of Australian football is in good hands for the 2008 Olympics, the World Cup in 2010 and beyond," O'Neill said.