Western Sydney Wanderers FC have confirmed that Hyundai A-League assistant coach Patrick Zwaanswijk will take the reigns of the club’s National Premier Leagues NSW Men’s first grade team for the remainder of the season.
Zwaanswijk joined the Wanderers Hyundai A-League coaching set-up at the start of September and has been tasked with creating a stronger pathway between the Wanderers Academy and first-team structure.
The former AFC Ajax youth product will coach the side in the club’s first season in the NPL top tier where they have already taken on some of the heavyweights of the competition.
Zwaanswijk will be supported by Wanderers assistant coach Labinot Haliti who will assist at training sessions.
Western Sydney Wanderers CEO John Tsatsimas said the role is a fantastic opportunity for Patrick to build relationships with the Wanderers Academy coaches, players and support staff.
“The role is a great opportunity for Patrick to get to know and work with our next generation of Wanderers ahead of the A-League season,” said Tsatsimas.
“Patrick has been given the task of streamlining our Academy to first team pathway and over the next few weeks he will be able to identify talent and support our first grade team.”
Wanderers Academy Technical Director Ian Crook said Patrick is a fantastic role model for the youngsters.
“Patrick has been in the shoes of these players and will be able to shape our Wanderers into leaders both on and off the field,” said Crook.
“Patrick is a fantastic role model and I’m excited to see what he and Labinot can bring to the team.”
Zwaanswijk said he was looking forward to supporting the first grade team in any way that he can.
“For me, it’s great to see the players in games and training, so I am looking forward to supporting them where I can and to be able to assess their strengths and weaknesses,” said Zwaanswijk.
“I am looking forward to guiding and mentoring the team where possible in this short period.”
Zwaanswijk replaces former coach Arthur Diles who departed the club for Greek Second Division outfit SKODA Xanthi where it is believed he will be the assistant to former Perth Glory coach Tony Popovic.
The Red & Black will take on Rockdale Ilinden this Sunday afternoon at Iliden Sports Centre in Zwaanswijk’s first match in charge.