Premier Men Reserves- 2023 Review

3 Sep

As the season closes on an eventful season, Head Coach Maurie Wasi reflects on a season of change but lots of positives.

WSAFC- Hi Maurie, so an obvious big change this year with a new Head of Mens' Football. How has it been?
MW- Scotty has been great. We spoke early in the year about his philosophy and expectations for the team and we set out to play the same formation as the Prem team. 3 at the back meant a change for the boys but they relished the change.

WSAFC- How did the squad compare to last year and how did pre season go?
MW- We had a good number returning from last year which meant we had a solid pre season. Good numbers meant we could really mix up our training including 11 v 11 games which helped the boys with the new formation. We also trained 3 times a week which was great.
It's a challenge with school football and waiting for some players to decide where they will play but all in all, we have a really strong squad.

WSAFC- What did the start of the season look like?
MW- Not surprising, it took us a few games to adjust to the new system. It took us 6 games to get our first win but the performance was always there.  Once we got our first win, we went on an unbeaten run of 5 games.
Around the midpoint of the season we knew we were losing some of our players to US college so we worked on preparing the younger players to step up.

WSAFC- Was there much change to the starting line up, week to week?
MW-As with the case with a reserves team, you have players being promoted to the Prem team and also Prem players needing to get playing time. Can be a challenge but they boys really enjoyed it and adapted well.
Max Beullens, Caspar McGavin and Will McKee all trained with the Prem team and played a mixture of Prems and reserves.
We had three 15 year olds in the team- Louis Spillane, Isikeli Brown and Will Britton. I've been with them since they were 8. I've loved seeing them progress.

Quick fire round

What was the best game of the season?
Bay Olympic at home who were top of the league at that time.

Who was your captain?
Hari Pathak-Adlard and Caspar McGavin. Both club boys. Both captained with a lot of care, knew their expectations and led by their actions.

Who was the top scorer?
Theo Gorman

What was the goal of the season?
Caspar against Auckland United last week. The build up was excellent, Caspar then took on their defence, cut inside, and bins, of course.

Who was the youngest player?
Isikeli Brown  just took it out from Louis Spillane and Will Britton

Who else deserves a shout out?
The whole team deserves so much credit. They worked so hard, stuck together and always tried to do the right thing. I loved how they kept with the plan and philosophy. I also felt they always showed a lot of care towards the football club. It's clear they love Springs.

Joel Paterson and Louis Spillane made their Premier debuts this year which was great to see.

Matt Parker deserves a big thank you. He still committed to the team despite his son being unable to commit this year. Big thanks, Matt