Goater appointed new Village coach

Shaun Goater has been appointed head coach of Dudley Eve and Friendship Trophy champions North Village.

It was announced yesterday that the former Manchester City striker, whose ascent to the English Premiership began in humble settings in Glebe Road, has succeeded Elliott Jennings who resigned from the top post due to personal commitments.

Jennings, however, will remain on the Reds' technical staff as Goater's deputy.

  • <B>Shaun Goater:</B> Returning to his first club as head coach.

    Shaun Goater: Returning to his first club as head coach.


Shaun Goater has been appointed head coach of Dudley Eve and Friendship Trophy champions North Village.

It was announced yesterday that the former Manchester City striker, whose ascent to the English Premiership began in humble settings in Glebe Road, has succeeded Elliott Jennings who resigned from the top post due to personal commitments.

Jennings, however, will remain on the Reds' technical staff as Goater's deputy.

Goater, who is also co-owner of USL Division Two outfit Bermuda Hogges, coached Village to a convincing 5-0 win over Hamilton Parish in Jennings' absence earlier this month.

" It is now official . . . Shaun has now come onboard and we have decided to feed the goat," declared Village president Shervin Dill. "We have taken on Shaun as our new head coach and basically it has been a seamless transition for us because we actually built up to this point over the past couple of weeks."

The Man City icon said yesterday he was looking forward to the new challenge of raising Village from the ashes.

"I was born red and white and so I have always embraced a challenge and in terms of the expectations of the Village fans and Village brand of football I know and understand. So I am looking forward to the challenges ahead," he said.

"It is going to be a challenge because the league is very competitive with teams such as Devonshire Cougars, Boulevard and PHC who are all hungry teams looking to impose themselves, which make things very interesting for the season."

Village have only managed two league wins so far this season and twice conceded seven goals in a match, including a 7-1 drubbing at PHC's expense in the Charity Cup last September.

But with a wealth of playing experience in England, Goater's arrival could be just the tonic Village need to ressurrect their season.

"I have taken over a team with their confidence low and so there's still some work to be done," he said. "It won't be easy but at the same time if we can get our game going who knows what we can achieve.

"It's definitely going to be a challenge, but we have a good bunch of players who intend to give it a good push and then see where we end up come season's end."

Dill added: "We have great expectations of Shaun. His first match in this transition was against Hamilton Parish and right away we saw a new purpose from the players. And even though we lost against Devonshire Cougars in our last match we still saw a basic improvement in our play and commitment from the players.

"The players have been very responsive to Shaun and of course the management is quite happy that he has decided to come onboard. He did a bit of a stint with us last season helping out with our Under-18s and so he's never been far from us."

Jennings stepped down just months into his second year in the top post.

In his debut season last term as head coach, the former Bermuda midfielder coached Rams to two major cup titles that included a record 7-3 bombardment of PHC Zebras in the Friendship Trophy final.

But the loss of several key cogs to studies abroad and lack of commitment deprived Village the chance to defend their Dudley Eve title over the festive holiday and left them dangling one point adrift of the relegation zone.

With speculation rife as to the reasons for Jennings' sudden resignation, Dill insisted his decision to stand aside and let Goater take over the reins had nothing to do with Village's poor start to the 2008-09 campaign.

"Elliott decided to step down due to personal commitments and we are very grateful for the contributions he has made and happy that he is staying on as assistant coach.

"We identified that we had some issues that weren't pointed to the coaching staff but had a lot more to do with the lack of commitment from the players going as far back as pre-season.

"We did have some concerns but met with the team and were able to resolve some of the major issues which had to do with the commitment and responsiveness of the players. As far as players' availability, we were very thin on resources at the beginning of the season and so we have had a rough start but have been in this position before.

"But we have sorted it all out and the players have re-committed themselves and we are happy with the responsiveness. As far as we are concerned things are back on track for us."

Also assisting Goater is another former team-mate, Wendell Baxter, who is the team's technical advisor.

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