Coach set on raising the bar

Jackson Lavell-LeeBusselton Dunsborough Times
Playing coach Sam Kellett in action for CMI Busselton City
Camera IconPlaying coach Sam Kellett in action for CMI Busselton City

Taking over as coach of Busselton City midway through the 2019 season, Sam Kellet brought an enthusiasm, dedication and focus to the young team — a mantra he wishes to continue in 2020.

The junior from England was originally an elite runner with high school Bishop Rawstone Academy until taking up soccer at the age of 15 and never looking back.

His immediate impact as a hard-running defensive midfielder earned several academy positions, but injuries plagued the young star and forced him out of top flight senior appearances. A silver lining appeared when Kellet was asked to coach a University of Central Lancashire side hungry for success.

His coaching prowess at UCLAN led Kellet on a coaching clinic tour of the world including America, Europe, Dubai and Singapore working for the Barcelona academy.

The young coach said he always focused on creating opportunities for players to grow and set high standards on the training track

“I get more from coaching than playing the game,” he said.

“Every single young player should feel like they have an opportunity to play senior soccer for Busselton. “Busselton is a team that presents young players with opportunity and helps them grow.”

On moving to Australia for work opportunities Kellet played for Western Knights in Perth’s State League.

However, working on mine sites made a State League career difficult and he moved to Bunbury to live with family, playing for the Dalyellup Park Rangers Football Club.

“I broke my leg playing for Dalyellup so I decided to focus on coaching,” he said.

“Busselton offered me the job half way through last year, we had only won one game until I began coaching and then we only lost three for the rest of the season.

“We finished on a high and every player finished with a smile on their face which is why I love coaching.

“I hope to carry on that work this season when it hopefully goes ahead.”

The transformative end to the season has brought with it optimism and pride with several new players rising through the ranks.

Kellet has brought gun defender Matthew Evans to the club and hopes fellow defender Justin McClerg can take the next step, under Evans tutelage, and earn a scholarship to a US university next year.

“Busselton is a great club with great morals and a great committee. Matthew Evans is one of the best players in the south west and he has set a high standard at training,” he said.

“Our captain Richard Amey is the perfect person to lead this team. He’s a great role model who leads by example with conditioning and training.”

Under Kellet, Busselton City are an attacking team who dominate possession and suffocate teams with pressure.

“My emphasis is on developing young players but we also have to compete for every single honour that is available, every trophy, we have a very strong team and we have some great local home- grown talent.”

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