Who Is Walter Pless?

Walter_Pless

A teacher by profession, but is now in his 38th year as a football writer. Has written for "Soccer Action" (Melbourne), "Australian Soccer Weekly" (Sydney) and "World Soccer" (London), as well as for several Tasmanian newspapers. Currently contributing to "Goal!Weekly" in Melbourne and the Australian magazine "Soccer International". Played for Croatia-Glenorchy, Caledonians, Metro, Rapid and University in Tasmania, as well as in the United States of America. Coached University, Metro and Croatia-Glenorchy.

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Sean Collins and Bob Gordon 28 November 2017 - Copy

Photo:  FFT president Sean Collins (left) and FFT Board member Bob Gordon at today's announcement of the new five-year plan made at Mt Carmel School in Sandy Bay [PlessPix]

Football Federation Tasmania today announced a five-year plan to boost football participation rates across the State.

The plan, which is consistent with the organisation’s vision, seeks $6 million in government funding and has been developed as part of the five-year plan for Tasmania and has a strong focus on improving infrastructure.

Media filming Gordon 28 November 2017 - Copy

Photo:  FFT Board member Bob Gordon addressed the media conference this morning at Mt Carmel campus [PlessPix]

Through infrastructure upgrades, the organisation believes steady growth will be accommodated, which will address the plan’s main aim to increase the number of registered players in Tasmania from the current 14,000 to 20,000 by the year 2023.

Football Federation Tasmania’s President, Sean Collins, said to achieve this, the Federation’s board has identified two key priority projects to facilitate and accommodate the anticipated growth.

Collins said pitches were overcrowded and were not available for the full year.

Three million dollars of the $6 million would be for club-specific requirements, while $3 million would be for infrastructure upgrades in the south and north of Tasmania.

“The first is an upgrade of KGV Football Park to make improvements to the artificial pitch, change rooms, referee facilities, public viewing areas and conveniences,” Collins said.

“With over 200 games currently played at the facility each season, including the Lakoseljac Cup Final which, in 2017, drew a crowd of 3,500 spectators and had 19,000 viewers on the live stream, the need for an upgrade to the antiquated facilities is urgent.

“Our second priority is the establishment of an artificial pitch in Launceston. With four senior clubs based out of the northern city, it makes sense to develop a dedicated playing facility that can act as the home of football in northern Tasmania and provide players with access to weatherproof facilities year round.

“The plan is the product of work undertaken over the past 12 months and focuses heavily on improving infrastructure, identified from findings following an extensive State-wide infrastructure audit conducted by the Federation.

“The audit involved consultation with all clubs, associations and key stakeholders from around the state focusing on current and future demands.”

Izzie Ottavi and Chris Tsakiris 28 November 2017 - Copy

Photo:  FFT's Isolina Ottavi and Chris Tsakiris working with youngsters at Mt Carmel today [PlessPix]

In addition to the major infrastructure projects, a series of club-based projects have also been identified.

These would see change rooms, club rooms, and lighting upgraded at a number of community grounds around the State to improve the facilities which currently fall short of the standard that is required.

“With over 20,000 people attending football games in Tasmania each weekend throughout the 2017 season, the need for upgraded facilities is paramount,” Collins said.

“Despite being both the fastest growing and largest participation sport in the country, football has previously been overlooked for funding initiatives [and] as a result the quality of facilities has failed to keep up with the current demand and many clubs do not have regular or sufficient access to grounds, a major constraint to participation.

“This needs to be addressed now to ensure a sustainable growth of football in Tasmania.

“The Federation believes investing in these upgrades would provide a significant boost to both local Tasmanian communities and the economy, and with 1,000 new junior players registering over the past three seasons, it is anticipated the need for these upgrades will only intensify.

“The benefits of participation in grassroots sport for communities are significant and represent a strong return on investment.”

Collins said he didn’t think an upgrade of the lighting at KGV Park was warranted as he felt the lighting was adequate.

He also said that plans for the development of the Cambridge facilities were on the back-burner.

He said FFT were in support of the A-League bid by a Melbourne-based consortium but that Football Federation Australia had yet to release the criteria for expansion bids.

FFT board member Bob Gordon said that a proposal for a rectangular stadium near the Hobart Domain was timely and appropriate and that such a facility would be able to cater for football as well as the two Rugby codes and so would be welcome.

Comments   

+3 #34 Anonymous 2017-12-10 23:58
Quoting Anonymous:
#27 Obviously the Beach desperate for more Zebra players to try n stop the 2017 and guaranteed 2018 champions Glenorchy Knights .


Knights luckily won the league with the last game of the season in 2017, so I doubt they will be "guaranteed" champions in 2018.
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+3 #33 Agreed #25 2017-12-07 06:38
Couldn’t agree anymore. You should see the standard in the Northern Championship then. Horrendous. Somerset only real standout but once their older players leave again they are in big trouble.

They need a real plan on how to keep the NPL Tas alive as you’d be lying if you think it’s flourishing at the moment.
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-2 #32 Anonymous 2017-12-07 05:44
Quoting Anon:
Nick has done an excellent job to recruit gabrel. Well done dj!


I bet Kingborough were thinking the same thing last season. How’d that go?
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+2 #31 Anonymous 2017-12-06 07:21
Quoting Anonymous:
Quoting Good move:
Quoting Anon:
Sklenar’s defection to Zebras is a disgrace, the guy has a nerve shopping himself about for $$$, heard he also had visa problems. Nick has open his wallet this time & has become the new GM.

Someone is a bit bitter. If Olympia was so great why would he even consider leaving? Alls not well at plastic park.


Sklenar in and McKeown out?


McKeown off to Olympia or South I hear. Doubt he will get game time at either though.
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+5 #30 donkey 2017-12-06 05:46
Quoting Good move:
Quoting Anon:
Sklenar’s defection to Zebras is a disgrace, the guy has a nerve shopping himself about for $$$, heard he also had visa problems. Nick has open his wallet this time & has become the new GM.

Someone is a bit bitter. If Olympia was so great why would he even consider leaving? Alls not well at plastic park.

Tim Cahill is free lol
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+6 #29 Anonymous 2017-12-06 04:23
#27 Obviously the Beach desperate for more Zebra players to try n stop the 2017 and guaranteed 2018 champions Glenorchy Knights .
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+2 #28 Tom 2017-12-06 02:13
#25 true apart from Olympia
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+6 #27 Anon 2017-12-05 10:55
Nick has done an excellent job to recruit gabrel. Well done dj!
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+13 #26 Anonymous 2017-12-05 01:06
Quoting Good move:
Quoting Anon:
Sklenar’s defection to Zebras is a disgrace, the guy has a nerve shopping himself about for $$$, heard he also had visa problems. Nick has open his wallet this time & has become the new GM.

Someone is a bit bitter. If Olympia was so great why would he even consider leaving? Alls not well at plastic park.


Sklenar in and McKeown out?
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-7 #25 Truth 2017-12-04 11:04
Quoting Snooze:
They better act fast as they State League has declined in standard. The gloss of it all has worn off. Only 3 to a max of 4 teams could win it at the start of the year. Then turns into a one horse race every year. Bottom 4 will never compete with the top 4. You’re having a laugh if you think the standard has got better. Only South have been consistently good every year.


Correct, standard definitely not better. I can only comment on the southern teams but the South Hobart of pre-state league would be flogging every team in this comp since inception. In fact,nearly every team in its immediate pre-state league years (2005-2010) would be beating their existing selves.
Zebras, Olympia, Clarence, Kingborough, South Hobart were all better teams with more heart than the current groups
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