AFLW Cats consider applicants for senior coach
GEELONG’S AFLW side are sifting through candidates to be their new senior coach, with applications closing at the weekend.
The Cats are looking for a successor to Paul Hood, who announced in early May that he would step down from the role.
Hood started working with Geelong’s women’s program in 2017 when the club first launched a VFLW team, and was named senior coach of the Cats’ inaugural AFLW team, a role he held between 2019 and 2021.
According to the ad the Geelong Football Club posted on Seek last week, the AFLW senior coach will be a permanent part-time, three-day-a-week appointment and report to Geelong’s head of AFLW, football pathways and player development Brett Johnson.
The successful applicant will have to meet a considerable list of key accountabilities, and their qualifications must include, among others, a minimum of Level 2 AFL Coaching Accreditation (with the commitment to continuing to Level 3), demonstrated coaching experience (preferably having coached their own team) with implementation of a successful game plan, previous success in a high-performance environment, and knowledge of the modern AFLW game.
The AFLW Cats started strongly in their debut season, finishing sixth and making the preliminary final, but have slid down the ladder in successive seasons, placing 10th in 2020 and 13th with only one win from nine games this year.
Hood first arrived at Geelong at the end of 2010 and held multiple roles including VFL men’s coach, player development manager, NGA manager, VFLW coach and most recently AFLW coach.
“In the past five years it’s been a joy to work alongside our staff in the women’s program, to be a part of building something that can inspire the young women of Geelong for generations,” he said.
“I’d like to thank Simone Bellears, Ben Waller, Brett Johnson, Simon Lloyd, Natalie Wood, Monica Kelly, George Seward along with all of our assistant and development coaches for their tremendous support of our players.
“To all the players I’ve had the privilege to coach, thank you so much for putting your hearts and bodies on the line and special mention to the three inspirational captains who served as leaders to those groups Bec Goring, Melissa Hickey and Meghan McDonald who were such great role models for their teammates in my time as coach.
“I wish all the players in our program every success on and off the field as I look forward to playing my role supporting the VFLW program for the rest of this season and then resume my former place in football as a mad Cats fan.”