Western Australia-based Hyundai A-League team Perth Glory Football Club is delighted to announce its participation in the recently created National Premier Leagues (NPL).
Football Federation Australia created the NPL to establish consistency across Member Federation competitions around the country. The NPL, which underpins the Hyundai A-League, promotes consistency across second-tier competitions nationwide to achieve improvement in the overall standard of the game in Australia.
Perth Glory is one of 12 teams provisionally accepted into the NPL by Football West and has joined Armadale, Balcatta, Bayswater City, Cockburn City, ECU Joondalup, Floreat Athena, Inglewood United, Perth, Sorrento, Stirling Lions and Subiaco.
The NPL WA season is planned to commence in the first week of March next year and will conclude in mid-September. The top team from each Member Federation competition will then contest an NPL finals series to find a national champion.
Next season’s NPL WA launch will also coincide with the introduction of the FFA Cup competition in June.
Perth Glory Chief Executive Officer Jason Brewer said the club’s inclusion in the NPL was a result of many months of discussions and planning.
“Perth Glory's involvement in the NPL WA next season represents an important step in realising the club's ambition to better connect elite player development with the wider football community in Western Australia,” Mr Brewer said.
“Our participation in the NPL WA follows an initial bid submission to Football West in July this year and several subsequent detailed discussions with the State’s governing body supported by recommendations from FFA. The result has been the implementation of a technical structure that is considered to be the best outcome for the A League club and local state clubs whilst at the same time as preserving the FFA recommended Talented Player Development Pathway in WA.”
“Over the coming months Perth Glory will work alongside the other NPL clubs and Football West to progress the various initiatives, including the NPL licence and participation agreement, to develop an NPL structure that is the most successful for football in Western Australia.”
“Glory’s participation in the NPL follows similar moves by other Hyundai A-League clubs including Newcastle Jets and Central Coast Mariners, who will all have their Youth teams playing in the top tier of their respective NPL’s from next season,” Mr Brewer said.
Competition and Coaching Structure
In addition to its Hyundai A-League team, Foxtel National Youth League team and Westfield W-League team, Glory will have a further eight teams in the NPL WA:
Team: NPL first team Squad size: 20 players including National Youth League squad and younger contracted A-League first-team players
Team: NPL Under 20s team Squad size:16 players aged 20 or under
Team: Under 18s to Under 12s teams Squad size:Six teams each with 15 players in the relevant age groups
Perth Glory Head Coach Alistair Edwards will oversee the Glory competition and coaching structure to ensure all involved are following the Glory and National Curriculum coaching and playing philosophies. The eventual aim is to produce players capable of playing in the Hyundai A-League and representing Glory.
Glory coach Alistair Edwards is excited about the opportunities for WA players which will result from Glory’s inclusion in the NPL.
“As a club, Perth Glory will now have the opportunity to work more closely than ever before with Football West and the football community in Western Australia,” Mr Edwards said.
“There is now a much clearer pathway for junior players to progress from the Skilleroos and Skills Acquisition Program, through the State NTC Program and up to the Hyundai A-League and even beyond.”
As Youth Development Manager, Perth Glory Assistant Coach Gareth Naven will oversee the Foxtel National Youth League as well as the NPL WA First Team and Under-20s.
Glory Assistant Coach Scott Miller will perform the day-to-day coaching duties for the Foxtel National Youth League team and will be supported by an additional assistant coach.
Glory’s Under-18s, Under-16s and under -15s teams will remain part of the NTC State Program and will be overseen by Kenny Lowe as part of his FFA NTC Head Coach responsibilities, in conjunction with Football West Technical Director Cris Ola.
Glory’s Under-14s, Under-13s and Under-12s teams will participate in the Skilleroos/Skills Acquisition Program and will be overseen by FFA Skill Acquisition Trainer Brad Hassell, again in conjunction with Cris Ola.
“Our principal objective through participating in the NPL WA and through our partnership with Football West was to provide a clear pathway for talented player development and the ability for our Foxtel National Youth League squad to play in an all year round program,” Mr Edwards said.
“Perth Glory can now provide Western Australian’s best and most talented juniors players every opportunity to develop and hopefully achieve their dream of playing for Perth Glory in the Hyundai A-League.”
“Importantly, Perth Glory will continue to pass on player development fees to any junior player who comes from local clubs and through Glory’s NPL WA and Foxtel National Youth League program and goes on to become a Perth Glory Hyundai A-League player.”
“Over the past 12 to 18 months we have been only too pleased to have made payments to Stirling Lions , ECU Joondalup and Sorrento for players such as Danny De Silva, Brandon O’Neill and Jack Clisby, and hopefully more payments will be made in the years to come with this clearer player pathway now in place,” Mr Edwards said.
As part of its planned participation in the NPL WA, Perth Glory will continue funding its Foxtel National Youth League team and has allocated additional funding in 2014 for its new NPL WA first team and Under-20s team.
Perth Glory’s teams will participate in the NPL WA under the club’s existing kit supplier arrangements and will play games on a home and away basis at a Perth metropolitan venue currently being finalised.
Mr Brewer said all teams will play in the clubs traditional colours.
"We expect the NPL will play a key role in improving the standard of the game in Western Australia and will in turn create a more tangible link between Perth Glory and local clubs,” he said. We believe our involvement will be a catalyst for attracting greater participation, support and sponsorship of the local game in Western Australia.