Ian Ferguson is ready to build North Queensland football from the ground up as he returns to the nation’s far north.
Ian Ferguson is ready to build North Queensland football from the ground up as he returns to the nation-s far north.
Ferguson coached the North Queensland Fury when they were part of the A-League and will now take on the role of head coach of the Queensland National Premier League side and technical director of the club.
Having gone on to coach Perth Glory after the Fury-s initial demise, the former Rangers player and Scottish international has intentions to steadily build the club up into a football powerhouse that will last well into the future.
“I am very excited to have been approached to come back to the club,” said Ferguson. “I don-t think the Fury got a fair crack at it last time and I am keen to make sure that this time we are going to do it right.
“In my role I am overseeing all the coaches within the club and making sure that they are providing the right education for the junior players from the under eights all the way up.
“We know that we need to have the correct structures in place to ensure that the club can survive and thrive not for one or five years but for well into the future.”
Ferguson-s first goal is to help bring through the next crop of youth talent that he feels need to be given a better pathway to the top levels of football in Australia.
“Last time at the Fury we had no youth team which made it very difficult to pick local players in the side.
“Now we are starting from the grassroots level and are going to focus on developing the local youth players and build the club around the talent that will come through the ranks.
“We are going to make sure that the young guys are getting more detailed training that focuses on the national curriculum from coaches that all have their B badges. This will give them the best chance to develop as players.”
The long term goal for Ferguson and the Fury is to again have a strong presence across the top tiers of Australian football.
“Firstly we want to get a National Youth League team that will further the progression of the strong depth of youth talent we have.
“We are then hoping for a W-League and an A-League team down the track but will only apply for these when we are certain that these teams will be viable for many years to come.”
Despite the departure of the A-League side Ferguson still believes there is a lot of support for football in the area.
“There is still a lot of passion in the local community.
“The NPL side gets two thousand people turn up to their matches and this is continuing to grow.
“Once everything gets underway and they see what we are trying to achieve in helping the local talent to thrive then I have no doubt that it will continue to grow further.”
While there were a few options on the table for Ferguson he believed that having the opportunity to stay in Australia was also the best decision for his family.
“I had a few offers back over in Europe but I did not want to relocate halfway around the world again.
“We really enjoyed our time when we were up there last time and are looking forward to returning in October.”
Having featured as a coach at the Mariners, Fury and Glory, Ferguson has not fully written off the chance of making a return to coaching in the A-League.
“I would never say never but it would have to be on my terms.
“There are a lot of people within clubs that make it very hard for the head coach so there would need to be a lot of changes there.”