Patrick Kisnorbo relished his experiences in youth, women's and men's football and now he's ready to lead Melbourne City's A-League team.
After passing his Melbourne City coaching apprenticeship with flying colours, Patrick Kisnorbo is ready to make his mark in the A-League.
In September, the 39-year-old was named City's head coach after predecessor Erick Mombaerts returned to France - the latest step in Kisnorbo's coaching pathway at the club.
After retiring in 2016, the former club captain became City's youth team assistant, then W-League assistant, before making the step up to women's head coach in July 2017.
After leading the W-League team to the 2017-18 championship, Kisnorbo became an A-League assistant in 2018 and worked under Warren Joyce and then Mombaerts across two seasons.
"It was a great learning curve," Kisnorbo told AAP.
"I got to work with some really great youngsters here in the academy, then obviously coaching the girls with some of the best footballers in the world which was great.
"In the meantime, I was doing my UEFA Pro Licence.
"So in that five years, there was a lot of learning and I'm still learning - I'll never be right all the time.
"But it was just a step-by-step preparation to be ready for an A-League head (coach job) one day - and obviously that's this year.
"But it's taken a lot of preparation, a lot of sacrifice, a lot of coaching hours, a lot of learning and I just want to do good for myself, the fans, the club and the players."
Kisnorbo got a taste of the top job last season, deputising for two games when Mombaerts opted not to travel to NSW due to coronavirus concerns.
Mombaerts, who Kisnorbo considers a mentor and one of his "best friends", overhauled City's playing style to create a high-possession, attacking brand - one his successor is adamant he will build upon in a bid to snare maiden A-League silverware.
Unlike previous seasons, where there was plenty of foot traffic in and out of City's Bundoora headquarters, the A-League grand finalists have maintained a relatively stable list and added some quality in the likes of Andrew Nabbout and the returning Ben Garuccio.
"We're in a fortunate position where we've kept the bulk of the players last year that know our style of play," Kisnorbo said.
"Because as a newcomer coming in, it's very difficult to learn in a short time but we've kept the squad together for almost a year now.
"We just want to build on what we've done and obviously the recruits that we've brought in are improvements on what we had last year, so we're very lucky and we want to do some special things this year."