After our Mens Premier resounding 6-0 win over Bay Olympic AFC last weekend, we caught up with a very satisfied Head Coach, Chris Zoricich.
We hear what Zoro had to say on….
• How Bay Olympic felt the full force
• The growing importance of video analysis
• The challenge of managing a large squad
• And why, despite the clean sheet, the defenders might be doing extra shuttle runs this week
6-0, obviously a very positive result. Last week you said the team needed to ‘fix a couple of things’, was it as simple as this?
Pretty much yes. We knew last week we created enough chances to win the game but got punished for not converting those chances. This week we did! We were in total control from pretty much the first whistle and once again made good players look average with our intensity and aggressive pressing. We did similar in the two previous games but didn’t get the results. Bay Olympic got the brunt of our frustration and the players fully deserved the win.
Top scorers in the league now. Connor Probert, Hayden Aish and Josh Margetts have all scored some special goals. Are you happy with the creativity we are showing in attack?
Yes we have scored 14 goals in 5 games which is great and shows our attacking creativity however I’m not too happy with conceding 8 goals in 5 games and that’s something we must improve on if we are to have any chance of making the top 6.
You referred to the use of video in your match analysis. Talk us through the advantages this gives you and maybe your ideal video set up.
Yes we analyze our own play and find areas we can improve on both individually and collectively as well as showing our good play (players love watching the good play!)
We also analyze our opponents for the next game and identify any strengths and/or weaknesses.
The players played to our game plan on Saturday and it worked well after watching Bay Olympic and how we could hurt them. The week before v Manukau the players were given specific details how to win the game at halftime but unfortunately couldn’t carry them out and got punished. Obviously lesson was learnt
At the moment I’m clipping all our video footage which is very time-consuming. Usually, my Saturday or Sunday nights are spent watching video footage and clipping the moments I feel we need to look at. Normally Monday nights are spent organizing and cutting these clips for viewing during the week.
Also individualised clips are sent to certain players to help them improve and develop. In an ideal world you would have an analyst to clip for you but we are not in a position financially for this to happen at the moment.
This year you have a larger than normal squad due to Covid grounding players who would’ve been overseas. How are you finding this? What are your main challenges?
Yes it hasn’t been easy with a large number of good players all vying for a spot in the matchday squad of 16 players!
We had a couple of early withdrawals due to work commitments and players recognizing they wouldn’t get a lot of game time and decided to move on. That happens.
The players have been great and all of them understand the situation as it has been made crystal clear from day one what we are trying to achieve here. I think that is key. As long as you are honest with players and they know where they stand. They may not always like it but it’s black and white, no grey areas.
The main challenge is keeping everyone happy which is almost impossible but as I said, as long as we are honest with them and the environment is somewhere they want to be involved in then most players will stay and fight for a place. That’s the secret to success. Provide healthy competition for places so no players get comfortable knowing they are playing every week regardless of how their form is.