President’s resignation not the end of NZF upheaval
Deryck Shaw’s resignation will be far from the end of the matter for New Zealand Football.
Dissatisfaction lingers among the federations and other stakeholders. The Herald on Sunday understands at least four of the seven federations are agitating for further change, and that could be enough to force a special general meeting in the next few months.
That could mean all the current board members would be forced to stand for re-election, including interim president Phil Barry.
Shaw’s departure on Friday was a significant step. As president of NZF since June 2015, he had intended — and wanted — to continue, despite all of the turmoil and trouble of the past six months.
Shaw was confident he was the right person to lead NZF into the future and implement the 22 recommendations outlined in the review completed by employment lawyer Phillipa Muir.
While there was probably a case for stability, it was never really realistic. Too much damage had been done, and in the end, Shaw had to take responsibility for that.
It’s believed there was also a split on the board; while Shaw had his allies and those who favoured the status quo, there were others who pushed for change.
The final straw was the resignation of councillor Jon Ormond last Tuesday. While Ormond had not been on the board for most of the period under review — he was elected at the end of May this year at the NZF Congress — his exit was a symbolic step.
In a statement sent to the board, Ormond called Shaw’s position “untenable” and ultimately he was proven right.
Pressure will now go on Shaw’s allies on the board, especially Phil Barry, Paul Cochrane and Scott Moran.
It’s understood they have been Shaw’s biggest supporters and their tenures encompassed the mostly shambolic reign of former chief executive Andy Martin. There also needs to be decisions made — quickly — about the future of the national coaches appointed by former technical director Andreas Heraf and endorsed by Martin.
While rumours have long persisted in football circles, it’s now been confirmed the appointment process was a sham and the outcome seemed pre-ordained.
That was confirmed by Muir in her report, when she said the original copy of Heraf’s Hundred Day Plan contained the names of coaches besides all the vacancies, but those names were taken out when the plan was presented to the board. Months later, all the names on that original draft were subsequently appointed.
With the lack of integrity in the process, that needs to be reviewed while there is still time, and it’s early in the World Cup cycle.
Given everything that has gone on, it feels like the only way the game can find its verve again is on the field. If that’s to happen, the best coaches need to be in charge.
If that’s the incumbents, fine, but reapplying for their roles seems the only course of action.
There also needs to be decisions made about the future of the national coaches appointed by Heraf and endorsed by Martin.