We have new Senior Team Coaches – Welcome Vata and Mr. T!

Our Club has appointed Senior team coaches for the 2010 season.

We welcome Vata Garcia to our club, he will be in charge of our Senior Team. And we also welcome back to the club Lou Temelkovski, Lou will take care of our Reserve Team. The Geelong Adi did a write-up on our coaching appointments, below is a copy of their article.

Angolan star lends a hand for Geelong Soccer Club

STAR ARRIVAL: New coach  Vata Garcia with reserves coach Lou Temelkovski, back left, Will Talev and Lois Petkovski.  Photo: ALISON WYND

THIERRY Henry was not the first high-profile soccer player to face the wrath of fans following a handball controversy, as Geelong Soccer Club’s new coach knows all too well from personal experience.

Vata Matanu Garcia, who has been unveiled as Geelong’s coach for next season, has been on the end of the same criticism as Henry, who has become a hate figure for Irish fans after his handball helped France to the World Cup last week.

Vata had his own Henry moment in 1990 when playing for Portuguese giant Benfica in the semi-final of the European Champions League, then known as the European Cup.

With Benfica needing a 1-0 home win over French side Marseilles to ensure its progress to the final, Vata struck the vital goal with eight minutes remaining. Marseilles bitterly complained about the goal, claiming that it came via Vata’s arm. The Angolan forward has never been forgiven in France, although the resentment has now been overshadowed by Henry’s own handball moment.

“Everyone said I used my hand and until this day people look at me in France,” said Vata. “They never forgot it and now it is the same for Henry.

“But the ball didn’t hit my arm, it hit me here,” he said while pointing to the top of his shoulder.

Benfica went on to lose the European Cup final to the great AC Milan side of the erai. Vata only played the last 15 minutes of the match.

“I was very sad that I didn’t start the game, but when I got on the Milan players were talking to me saying ‘you won’t use your hand this time’,” he recalled.

“They had very experienced players and they were marking me very closely. It wasn’t good because we lost, but we lost to a very big club.”

Vata played under several leading coaches, including former England boss Sven Goran Erickson at Benfica and the father of Inter Milan manager Jose Mourinho at his previous club, Varzim.

“I learned many things from my coaches and I was always thinking about becoming a coach myself,” he said. “Erickson was a good man. He always said that he knew he wasn’t the best coach in the world, but he had the best communication with the players and everyone wanted to play for him.”

Vata was top scorer in the Portuguese top flight in 1989, with 16 goals, and played 65 times for Angola. He has subsequently played and coached in Indonesia.

“Geelong is a good area for me and the club has got good facilities,” he said. “I know the standard is lower than where I’ve played previously, but I always try to do everything professionally.

“I want to do a good job. I enjoy working with young players and I want to transfer what I know to them.”

The coaching appointment comes as Geelong, which narrowly escaped relegation from Provisional League 2 this year, reshuffles its off-field staff, with Louis Temelkovski named reserve team coach and president Will Talev moving to a development role. Louis Petkovski has replaced Talev.