Harvey Is New Pride Coach
Words: Michael Flynn
Western Pride have confirmed former Whitsunday Miners coach Graham Harvey as the club’s new Senior Men’s Head Coach.
Harvey replaces Karl Dodd, who departed the Ipswich-based club earlier this month to join Brisbane Roar as High Performance Manager.
The 31-year-old Englishman previously coached the Mackay-based Miners to the Queensland State League 2012 Grand Final before serving as assistant coach to David Large at Brisbane Strikers in 2013.
Harvey acted as stand-in coach for Strikers in one PlayStation 4 NPL Queensland match that season - a 3-0 away loss against Redlands United - and said while there was no undue pressure to win his first match he was hopeful of a more positive start to his time with Pride.
"You're always looking to try to win your first game but there's a bigger picture at stake here to make sure the players are prepared and ready for the future," he said.
"It's been a bit of rush job but I'm very excited about it. Karl has left the club in a very good state on and off the field so the transition has been quite easy."
Harvey's role at Pride will replicate that of his predecessor, who in addition to being coach of the senior side also guided the coaching of the Youth Men and Under 18 Boys.
He further explained that Pride's youth development focus was encouraging and very different to the situation he had in his gig at Miners.
"It's a different project to be honest. The Miners were sitting down the bottom of the table but had quite a lot of experienced players floating around Mackay and playing in the local league, so it was easy to pick up some results."
"Pride are really focusing on the rules of the NPL and making it a youth development project. The youth philosophy that Karl brought in is FFA's mantra of making the NPL that development league."
"We obviously want to make Finals football next year and beyond but we want to give the boys that experience of high level football, so it's going to be different to the Miners and I don't think you can really compare the two."
Pride General Manager Pat Boyle explained Harvey was previously earmarked to join the Pride coaching team next season under Dodd, but had been fast-tracked into the top role following Dodd’s departure.
“Graham is of a similar understanding and style that Karl was and we’ve already seen the success of Karl joining our ranks,” Boyle said.
“So for us it is business as usual because Graham steps in with the same ideals and approach and for the players that means a minimum of fuss in the transition,” he concluded.
Harvey added that he remains grateful to Strikers for the experience he forged there and he hopes to impart that wisdom in his new role.
"I really enjoyed my time at the Strikers and really learned a lot under David Large and working with some top players. I hope I can pass that experience on to the Pride," he concluded.
Harvey took his first training session at Pride earlier this week and will be in charge of the side when they face Sunshine Coast FC this weekend.
Western Pride FC v Sunshine Coast FC
Saturday, 18 July
Briggs Road Complex Ipswich
This match will be LIVE STREAMED on the PlayStation 4 NPL Queensland website.