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Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Search begins for new Jets coach

The Newcastle Jets are on the hunt for a new mentor after head coach Craig Deans declared he was stepping down from the role next season.

The news soured the A-League club’s surprise 2-0 victory over derby rivals Central Coast Mariners on Tuesday evening.

Deans admitted the position had taken its toll on him.

“From my perspective, it’s a case of being worn out with the situation of being the head coach here,” he stated.

“The past 18 months or so have been pretty tough.

“You put on a brave face every week and try and put a positive spin on everything.

“But, that takes a toll on a person.

“I think it’s best I make the decision and we make the change.

“I’d like to stay.

“I’ve had a chat with the club about staying on in another capacity, however that’s still a few weeks away.”

Deans said his decision wasn’t sudden.

“I’ve had conversations with the Jets starting three or so weeks ago around my role and what I think is best for the future of the club,” he explained.

“I’ll simply step down – however, I’ll finish the season off.

“It’ll give the club the opportunity to find someone who can come in and have a full pre-season and the rest of this season to look at the players and plan a pre-season and bring in the players they need, which is something we didn’t have last year.”

It’s been a difficult 2021 for the Jets, who sit last of the ladder – just one point behind the Melbourne Victory.

However, Archie Goodwin and Lucas Mauragis provided a shining light during the week.

The pair was instrumental in the much-needed win.

Goodwin set up the first goal for Roy O’Donovan before Mauragis fired the Jets’ second past Mark Birighitti just moments later.

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