Shepparton News

CLUB LEGEND TO COACH COBRAM ROAR

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There might not be any action on the pitch at the moment, but there has been plenty of movement on the sidelines at Cobram Roar Soccer Club.

On Friday, the club announced Vince Iannucci as the new senior men’s coach for next year’s Albury Wodonga Football Associatio­n season.

Iannucci, a much-loved figure at the club, enters the role following the decision from current mentor Bill Puckett to step down at the end of this campaign.

Puckett finishes up after four years in the role.

Iannucci has been a committee member, captain, player and coach, while he is a member of the Cobram Soccer Club Team of the Half Century.

Roar president Paul Bovalina said the club was over the moon to have Iannucci locked in.

“We are very excited to welcome Vince on board,” Bovalina said.

“It’s a real positive for the club to have somebody like Vince in the role. He is someone who has played soccer for Cobram and been involved with soccer in Cobram for a very long time and the club’s happy to have him as coach. Soccer is in his blood.

“The opportunit­y came up after Bill decided to step down, we thank him for everything he’s done during his time as coach.”

Iannucci, whose son Gianluca is a Melbourne Victory player, said he was grateful to the club for giving him the chance.

“I would like to thank the committee for giving me the opportunit­y to lead our club in 2022. I’m honoured and keen to make a start and plan for the season ahead,” Iannucci said.

“Secondly, I want to congratula­te Bill on a wonderful stint at the helm in some of the most trying of times, he has done a fantastic job and seeing our kids run around on a weekend is a testament to him and his passion for the club, the community and the game.

“Our future is bright, we have some of the best junior players in the competitio­n and mixed with the senior players at the club already, (we’re) on the brink of some good times, on and off the pitch.”

The Iannucci announceme­nt headlines the coach signings, with Roar naming its coaching line-up for next year.

Taner Tekin returns to steer the senior women’s side, while Mick Millar and Nathan Thomas are the gaffers of the under-17 boys and reserve men’s side respective­ly.

“The club is in a really positive position, we have signed our coaches for next season and we can’t wait to see what the future holds,” Bovalina said.

Roar will not be without Puckett next year with the experience­d talent set to play on.

The outgoing coach said he loved his time in the top job.

“Looking back on my time as senior coach, I’m really proud to see the amount of juniors that have passed through the grades and made well deserved first team football appearance­s,” Puckett said.

“This has been the biggest highlight throughout the journey.

“All years brought joy and working alongside a great committee, who allowed me to be myself and coach the way I felt was best, was a pleasure.”

Meanwhile, the AWFA season remains on hold.

A decision is set to be made on Thursday night at a league meeting with member clubs.

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