Chris Greenacre installed as Phoenix assistant
In keeping with the very British feel to on-field affairs, the Wellington Phoenix have today announced Englishman Chris Greenacre as assistant coach to Scot Ernie Merrick for the upcoming A League season.
Greenacre - who joined the Phoenix in 2009 as a player after spells with Leeds United, Manchester City, Cardiff and Blackpool to name a few – was assistant coach to Ricki Herbert last year before taking full control when the All Whites coach resigned late in the season.
Having proved himself to be a valuable asset since he arrived in the capital, the Phoenix were keen to hold on to Greenacre, something the club’s general manager, David Dome, was keen to point out.
“The club wants to invest in Chris Greenacre,” Dome said.
“He has been fantastic for us both as a player and assistant coach.
“When he had to take over the coaching role at short notice last season he stepped up and got some excellent results.
“We see Chris having a future with the Phoenix.”
For Greenacre, who also recently decided to line-up for over-35s side Waterside Karori Dreamers in Wellington’s Masters 1 division, the option of remaining a key figure at the Phoenix was one he couldn’t refuse.
“I’m delighted with the way it has worked out,” Greenacre said.
“I had a little taste of the head coaching role at the end of the season and enjoyed it, but I know I am not yet ready for that position.
“Ernie said he wanted me at the club and I feel I can help with the transition. I look forward to working with him.”
And for Merrick, Greenacre had all the right attributes he was looking for in an assistant.
“I was impressed from the moment I met Chris,” Merrick said.
“He has the attributes and character to be a coach.
“He helps people, has an honest and open personality and good communication skills.”
Roll on next season, then.