Clayton Zane's first match in charge of the Newcastle Jets youth team will be against Hamilton Olympic this weekend.
Clayton Zane will take the reigns of the Newcastle Jets youth team for the first time when the Jets take on Hamilton Olympic at Darling Street Oval on Saturday afternoon.
It will be somewhat of a baptism of fire for the new coach, with Hamilton having won each of their last seven matches in the competition.
However, Zane will take some confidence from the fact that it was the Jets who inflicted Olympic with their last loss, a 3-1 defeat in round five.
“I watched the Jets last Saturday and watched Hamilton on the Sunday and there-s no doubt this will be one of our tougher games,” Zane said.
“Our last two wins have been against Lake Macquarie and West Wallsend who are the two bottom teams, so it will be interesting to see how we go against one of the strongest teams in the NBN State League.
“There are no easy matches for the boys in this competition because everyone wants to play against them and everyone wants to try and beat them.”
While his official duties with the Club only started this week, Zane said he was already well aware of the talent in the Jets- playing squad.
“I-ve been to the last four NBN State League matches since it was announced I was taking the job,” he explained.
“I-ve been in and around the team, gone to the matches, been in the dressing room and been part of the warm-up with them so I-m starting to get to know everyone that is involved in the team.
“I-ve also been watching the NSWIS team which is under the Jets in order to prepare for the National Youth League and to see if anyone there is ready to make the step-up.”
Zane said the fact he shares the same footballing philosophy as the current Jets coaching staff would make for a smooth transition.
“Before I took the job they asked my what my thoughts were on how football should be played,” he said.
“I believe in a possession based game where you control the game and keep the ball for longer periods than the opposition.
“Some drills I-ll do are my own and I-ll put my own spin on things, but behind everything will be the same thought process that myself and the other coaches at the Jets share."
Zane said he would be looking to use the youth team to groom the Jets- talented youngsters for the step-up to A-League level.
“I-ve been going to the first team sessions with Craig Deans and Gary van Egmond and I-ve been working with them to see what they-re trying to do with the boys and see what their expectations are,” he said.
“I-ll be trying to fit in with what they-re doing, rather than me coming in and doing my own thing.
“We-ll be working along the same lines so the youth team players are ready when they come into the first team and they already know what is required of them and what they need to do.”
Match Details: NBN Northern NSW State League Newcastle Jets v Hamilton Olympic Darling St Oval Saturday, July 7 Kick-off 2:30pm