Terry Kirkham has joined the Western Pride as the u20 head coach and assistant coach of the top side.
Terry Kirkham has joined the Western Pride as the u20 head coach and assistant coach of the top side. Rob Williams

New coach excited to get back to his roots

TERRY Kirkham is here to take part, not to take over.

The recently appointed Western Pride NPL assistant coach and Under-20s head coach has a glittering resume spanning 25 years and multiple high-profile coaching appointments.

He has multiple premiership wins in Victoria and Queensland to his name.

But after taking a year away to recharge and reflect on his career, Kirkham joined the Pride this off-season happy to take on a different role slightly away from the spotlight.

"Some people around the place may think I'm turning up looking to take over the first team job - that's not what I'm here to do at all,” Kirkham said.

"I'm here to support the new manager, not to sit there watching and waiting.”

Kirkham said he is ready to embrace "stepping into someone else's shadow”, and is focused solely on doing what he does best - developing young talent and providing a smooth transition from junior and youth football into the senior team.

"My role will be to support the club's processes and make sure the messages are being spread correctly,” he said.

"It's to make sure there is a clear direction on the training track and in games, so that when these young players eventually step into the first team the system they have played in has been a mirror image.

"For the last 16 years it's been other people working in my shadow, now I'm stepping back into someone else's shadow if you like.

"I'm fully on board with that.”