The Newcastle Jets can confirm that Youth Team Coach, Labinot Haliti will depart the Club to take up an opportunity at another Hyundai A-League club.
Under the tutelage of Lawrie McKinna, the former Jets striker undertook the journey from player to coach in Newcastle.
Haliti began as a Youth Team assistant to McKinna in July 2017, before completing his coaching badges and taking the step up to Head Coach in November 2018.
During his time at the Club, Haliti played a role in a number of Youth Team campaigns in both the Foxtel Youth League and NPL Northern NSW.
He also oversaw the side at international tournaments, with two trips to the Weifang Cup and one to the Hong Kong Soccer Sevens.
Haliti also spent time with the first team with the striker attending training off his own bat in order to continue his development in a professional environment.
The striker is one of a number of former Hyundai A-League players who have gone on to coaching roles within the Club’s Academy system, along with Daniel McBreen [U/16s coach], Glen Moss [Youth goalkeeping coach], and Craig Deans [Westfield W-League coach and Academy Technical Director].
Haliti thanked the Club and it’s fans for their support throughout his time in Newcastle.
“I’ve spent a lot of time in Newcastle since I first joined as a player back in 2005, so it’s a city very close to my heart,” Haliti said.
“Lawrie gave me the opportunity to develop as a coach, and I couldn’t be more thankful for his faith and guidance over the past two years. He’s a friend, a mentor, and a father figure and I’ll be forever grateful to him.
“It’s been fantastic to work with so many talented youngsters in the Jets Academy and I think that Newcastle fans have a lot to look forward to.
“I feel that the Club’s Academy programs are in a great place, the youth team is flying, they’re in fantastic shape with some brilliant results lately. I’m happy to have contributed to that, and it’s good to be leaving the boys in the capable hands of the boss and Glen Moss.”
Club CEO and Youth Team assistant, Lawrie McKinna, was pleased to see Haliti progressing as a coach.
“It’s been a pleasure to watch Labi grow as a coach and he leaves the Club with our blessing,” McKinna said.
“This is a great opportunity for Labi to continue his development and it’s a credit to his hard work and dedication the last two years.
“His progression at the Jets is proof that we don’t just offer pathways for our young players, but also for those coming to the end of their playing careers too.
“Labi has quickly become a great coach but he’s also a fantastic character, a great person to have around any football club, and we wish him all the best in the future.”
Haliti will lead the Youth Team for a further two weeks, with Lawrie McKinna set to step in as Head Coach of the Youth Team thereafter.