Old Coaches

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wrote on 30-Oct-14 08:09

Gene coached WPH in the late 90s and yep, the fitness was insane. He tried the 4-3-3 with the constant "the system works". Sadly some of the then 'old guard' didn't agree with the system, or more to the point, didn't get it, so Gene met with some opposition. I think fundamentally he just lacked the ability to communicate the "system" as he loved to call it. It required certain key positions to increase their work load in a game more so than playing 4-4-2 and the personnel in those positions at the time weren't up to scratch physically and weren't overly interested in becoming that. Nice enough bloke but needed more conviction and less accomodation to see it through at the then WPH. His assistant, Steve who's now associated with STA (not PL) was a classic. We couldn't understand a word he said at training lol.

wrote on 30-Oct-14 08:09

What ever happened to Gene Isoardi? I played with Beecroft with him during the mid 1990's. He was eccentric and developed his own system. He did however understand the conditioning required to play at the level. He also used 4-3-3 which was ahead of his time. I would have liked to see his three year plan evolve. At Beecroft he certainly improved us for a year. I remember a ferocious pre-season were we ran up and down sand hills, lifted weights, and kicked very small plastic balls. He was a footballing version of Percy Cerutty. He needed a assistant who could smooth over his communication and build a commitment amongst the team to his goals. Sadly with single curriculum coaching guys like this are a rarity. I heard he went on to WPH but not sure now.

wrote on 30-Oct-14 09:03

He was a very good player. He was in his late 30's when he coached us and he one a couple of games on his own. Did he play at WPH? Great fitness and a very light mover. Good touch and a cracking long range shot.

wrote on 30-Oct-14 09:04

He met similar resistance at Beecroft. Juice, do you know where he is now? With benefit of 20 years hindsight I reckon he was on to something!

wrote on 30-Oct-14 09:08

He was a bit older when he coached us. He played one or two ressies games when we were light on numbers mid season and could definitely still move well. His reactions weren't quite up to speed nor was his execution but that's to be expected given he hadn't played in a fair while though he did have a good touch.

wrote on 30-Oct-14 09:09

No I don't know what he's up to now but you are right.

wrote on 30-Oct-14 10:00

Gene and I grew up together and played for the rangers in the early days. He and his older brother Steven were freaks what they did on the field as 10 year olds I've never seen up to this day from any kid.You are correct in saying he was ahead of his time. I think he changed his name to Chi Chi Mendes.

wrote on 30-Oct-14 10:07

Amazing how reactions go off a cliff between 35-45. How are yours going Juice?

wrote on 30-Oct-14 10:08

Not surprised. I used to subscribe to fitness with ball but somehow I never got fitter and stronger. Gene built on the Lydiard maxim of getting fit to play. This is the bit professionals don't talk about. Most can stay fit on ball work because of their base. At this level the conditioning is not there. Gene introduce all the running drills to correct form and replicated game type movements with springing, hopping and jumping. A mate watched us as Cheltenham one night from his car. Funniest thing he ever saw.

Old Player
wrote on 30-Oct-14 13:05

Geno was fundamentally a really nice guy, had a lot of confidence in his system, and yeah agree was ahead of his time, but unfortunately had little confidence in himself which affected his communicating with players. Gus Cerro took over half way through the 2003 season after starting out as Gene's assistant and following clash of personalities. Think he now lives on the central coast.

killing it
wrote on 30-Oct-14 14:01

Recollections Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > Amazing how reactions go off a cliff between > 35-45. How are yours going Juice? think his are ok. did get players medal for the ressies gf this year

Ken Smith
wrote on 30-Oct-14 16:07

Geno is living on the Central Coast, I have known him for many years. played with him for awhile.(before his Ranger Days) also coached with him at WPHC. At 19 years of age he played for Australia & was headed overseas but a car accident put him out of the game for about 5 years. Last time I spoke with him he was coaching an under 20 side

wrote on 30-Oct-14 20:07

stay in your grid!!!

wrote on 31-Oct-14 08:00

Geno coached us at NER and yes to all of the above with the fact he was before his time with his formation. He was extremely passionate about the game, even to the stage where he took everything personally when the system didn't come off!! He did play for Australia as a schoolboy and unfortunately the car accident ruined the body which is why he went down the path of coaching. Would have been great in a situation with young kids in some form of an academy who were willing to listen and had time to watch it work. Unfortunately that wasn't possible in PL where you have many people who are not prepared to change and want results immediately.

wrote on 31-Oct-14 08:09

Agreed Hally. I remember running up and down Palm Beach in the soft sand and hitting the deck on his call. We would go and eat hamburgers at whale beach afterwards. He had a gentle nature and loved the comeraderie of the squad. Gerard McColgan used to say he was the best but couldn't communicate the system.

Getting On
wrote on 31-Oct-14 10:02

Someone mentioned Gus Cerro, whatever happened to him, very passionate with lots of ability. Remember him at west penno then think he tried to start his own academy....heard he upset a few.

wrote on 31-Oct-14 10:05

Gus was like Gene. Very passionate when it came to football. Gus was on a different level having played NSL and for Pahang Stealers in Asia. Like his Argentinian background he was a very skilful player that like to express himself on the feild. I saw some footage of his NSL career once and it was a deadset nutty-a-thon with some ridiculous moves to beat players at times. As a coach he had his positives but unfortunately Gus didn't do so well with confrontation which we all know happens from time to time. He took over from Gene and took us from mid tablers on the ladder to champions in 03 and premiers in 04 with three gf appearances from 03-05 and whilst yes he wasn't coaching us in 04 and 05, I believe particularly with 04 it was the reminants of his coaching that saw WPH's success in those years. He left to start his on football academy for kids which is where his real strengths lies. He's brilliant with kids and football and fantastic for grassroots at that level. Last I heard he was in involved in Marconi youth academy. Disappointingly I guess Gus' legacy to WPH is more remembered for the players he upset which began the 'great exodus' with players such as Boz, the Seales, Tim Hill and the like leaving for other clubs and effectively ripping the guts out of 1st grade which never really recovered until recently. He didn't really come to terms with park football and park footballer attitudes I guess.

Gene Isoardi
wrote on 01-Nov-14 20:00

HI boys and "stay in your grids". I was looking for the results of the A League and accidently came accross this forum as I often veiw the GHFA P/L results for interest. I did recieve a call from my very good friend who I have known for years, Ken Smith on Friday afternoon. Yes I am I still alive and kicking well with (football) passion. I do live on the Central Coast and have developed my systimactil system further in a more advanced format. Nothing you guys could not handle with proper guidance. You know, as my wife now (Karina) suggested, I should write to you all and provide you with the facts that really occurred back in those days and the way I went about coaching, in the least amount of words as possible. Firstly and formost no team can play soccer (football) without being totally fit and I mean fit in all the correct areas i felt where necessary. This would allow for a team as a unit to achieve the objectives of the system i implemented. Ball skills in all forms was a priority as this aided our performace as individuals and a team on the park. Movement and passing was a major importance that connected the whole form together. Time on the ball came from space on the park which was created through the system, proper team movement. Movement from the back line through to the forwards was the form of attack whilst the defending was forced from the front. My old saying, you attack from the back and defend from the front. So there was a lot more than fitness that achieved results it was total fitness including fitness on the ball, rhythm , timing, balance, agility and centre of gravity properties for each player which was necessary to developed to help aid the objectives I required on the park. Just look at what Gus Hiddink achieved with Australia in the 2006 world cup game against Italy. I could go on and on..... For those that suggested I could not communicate, not true. In fact I was able to illustrate in real time form what was to be achieved. In teams that I coached, many players did not want to put in the hard yards or co-operate and unfotunately this was a negative in my mind. There where some players that did not want to go with change a very advance change that was drilled down simply for players to grasp. With the situation with Gus at WPH was not a clash of personalities as suggested it was a mere move by myself becasuse the current situation was too difficult to offset and at that same stage I had personnal work demands which where a priorty.I could not feel better about Gus taking over the reins. Overall I had learnt from coaching at North Epping, Beecroft and West Pennant Hills. However, these teams prior to my coaching were 2nd from religation mode and via my coaching we managed to place these teams both 1st and 2nd grade within the top 4 position on the table. Thanks boys for your thoughts take care and you may never know where we will meet again. Gino Isoardi

wrote on 01-Nov-14 21:00

WPH are the biggest club in GHFA by far have won 3 premierships since 1977. Must have been some great coaches.

wrote on 02-Nov-14 20:07

Good to hear you are still involved Gino. As I said I think the system was ahead of its time. And the more I learn about human movement and all round fitness the more you are vindicated not hat front. Good luck Gino. I hope to run into again sometime.

Old Player
wrote on 15-Dec-22 11:03

Just stumbled upon this banter again, history is so interesting, my regards to Gino

Pete Beach
wrote on 28-Sep-23 20:25

Hey Gino,

Did you play for the Joeys against English Schools in 1974 in Sydney?