Sydney FC have appointed one of the A-League's all-time greats alongside one of Australia's fastest rising coaches to lead their youth set up in 2019.
A-League legend Shane Smeltz, and two-time U/18 Championship winner Jimmy van Weeren, have been appointed Sydney's U/20 coach and NPL gaffer respectively.
31-year-old Van Weeren began his coaching career with the Sky Blues' U/15 side, before leading their U/18s to two consecutive Premiership / Championship doubles.
Van Weeren has former experience as a development coach with Football Federation Australia and boasts an FFA 'A' Licence, but will face a different task with Sydney's NPL side, who finished last in the 2018 NSW NPL, with four wins, four draws and 14 losses.
“It’s going to be a fantastic challenge and I’ve got a fabulous group of players and staff to help with that,” van Weeren said.
“I’ve no doubt we’ve got a lot of work ahead of us as we prepare for the first game in just over a month, but I’m looking forward to producing players who can become integral to our Hyundai A-League squad in future years.”
Johnny Warren medallist and two-time Oceania Player of the Year, Smeltz is second in the all-time A-League goal-scoring charts and played two seasons for Sydney between 2014 and 2016.
Smeltz formally retired in 2017 and adds additional prestige to a high-quality Sydney backroom staff, featuring renowned goalkeeping coach John Crawley, former Galatasay midfielder Ufuk Talay and former FFA assistant technical director Kelly Cross.