Walmsley takes the reigns in NYL

The Central Coast Mariners’ second National Youth League (NYL) campaign has been boosted by the appointment of Mariners Academy & Development Manager Tony Walmsley to the NYL Head Coach post.

The Central Coast Mariners- second National Youth League (NYL) campaign has been boosted by the appointment of Mariners Academy & Development Manager Tony Walmsley to the NYL Head Coach post.

Walmsley replaces inaugural NYL Head Coach Alex Tobin, who will continue to assist Mariners Football Manager Lawrie McKinna in the Hyundai A-League, with Walmsley to be assisted in the NYL by foundation Mariners player and iconic local product Damien Brown.

Since the close of the Mariners- inaugural NYL season, the club has had a chance to reflect on the lessons learned by their first up experiences in Australia-s new development league, with Walmsley-s appointment perhaps the most noteworthy of several initiatives aimed at increasing the chance for the Mariners- NYL squad to provide the Mariners- Hyundai A-League line up with talents suitably prepared to contribute to the top level of club football in Australia.

"Since Tony joined us at the Mariners we have been delighted with his on and off field contribution to all facets of our club operations and we see him as a natural choice to spearhead our next and future NYL campaigns," said Mariners Executive Chairman Lyall Gorman.

"Tony-s role at the Mariners is quite broad in that he plays an integral role in implementing and monitoring our vast academy and youth development networks and given this expertise, Tony is perfectly suited to identify and develop the players that we believe to be best positioned to one day make an impression in the Hyundai A-League.

"Last season, Alex Tobin and his team performed admirably despite several unenviable circumstances that inevitably arose throughout what was a startup competition and we congratulate he and his squad for their collective efforts.

"Having reflected on our achievements of last year, we-ve put some measures in place to ensure that we improve not only this year, but in future years and we ensure that the NYL works for us the way that we want it to, which is to ultimately groom players to a level where they are one day capable of wearing the Mariners crest in the Hyundai A-League.

"By welcoming Tony to our NYL set up and allowing Alex to dedicate his time entirely to the Hyundai A-League, we believe we have immeasurably increased the chances for each of our men-s teams to flourish throughout 2009/10 and beyond and we-re indeed excited by what awaits us in both the NYL and the Hyundai A-League."

Part of the Mariners- renewed NYL philosophy will be to recruit players with high-level youth representative pedigree of a young age - born in 1991 and 1992 for the forthcoming season - to allow such players adequate time to develop into Hyundai A-League talents.

At present, recruitment plans for the second NYL season are well advanced, with many elite young players from the Central Coast and its surrounding regions and also Australians playing abroad having already been, or soon to be, assessed and evaluated by Walmsley and the Mariners- senior coaching staff.

Through the Mariners- Academy and youth development initiatives, it is intended for the Mariners- NYL stocks to include an increasingly higher percentage of Central Coast born and bred players, while an invitation for the Mariners- NYL team to compete in August-s Weifang Cup in China, which features the likes of Ajax Amsterdam, Olympiakos and Jubilo Iwata, currently being considered.

In 2008, Walmsley was first appointed Academy & Development Manager at the Mariners in a bid to boost the clubs unique youth development and talent identification structures ahead of its fourth campaign.

At the time of his appointment, Walmsley was employed as Director of Football at the Gladesville-Hornsby Football Association (GHFA), one of seven grassroots football associations to benefit from a partnership with the Mariners and home to over 13,000 registered players.

At the GHFA, Walmsley was responsible for introducing one of the country-s most envied junior and senior representative structures and most successful grassroots football development programs.

Prior to linking with the GHFA, Walmsley-s former roles included Academy Director for the official Manchester United Youth Development program throughout Oceania, Co-ordinator of the NSW Olympic Athletes program and senior coaching appointments with the Queensland Soccer Federation, Soccer Tasmania and the New South Wales Institute of Sport.

"I-m personally delighted to have been given the opportunity to contribute the NYL in this new capacity and excited by the challenges that lie ahead," said Walmsley.

"We learnt a lot about the NYL and its potential benefit to our club and Australian football in general last season and the club as a whole has an overwhelming desire to improve in areas where we were perhaps lacking last season and to that end, we-re working tirelessly behind the scenes to ensure that we achieve the outcomes that we want to in the NYL."