Banks hangs up the gloves for ECU

Banks hangs up the gloves for ECU

Posted on September 12, 2014 in 'News'

The long and illustrious career of ECU Joondalup keeper Andy Banks came to a winning end after ECU beat Subiaco AFC 3-0 in the final National Premier League-WA game of the season.

The 38-year- old joined the club in 2010 after playing professional football in the UK, and the decision to pull the pin was tough. “It was a tough decision, but the body is not getting any younger and the demand of training two nights a week was the main reason I retired,” Banks said.

“The Training these days is very intense and it was taking me longer to recover this season. I have been very lucky to play as long as I have because of being injury free for most of my career.”

The keeper has had a great time at Joondalup and has had many highlights and low lights. “It’s been a great journey at the club and I wouldn’t change a thing,” he said. “Winning the reserve cup final in the first year of being in Australia was great and winning the ’Players player of the year twice, was special too.

“But the most disappointing point was this season, when were beaten by Stirling Lions in the semi-final of the FFA cup this year.”

His career began in the UK and Banks has worked with some outstanding coaches. “There have been a number of quality coaches that have had an influence on my career throughout the years,” Banks explained.

“Sam Allardyce was my youth team manager at Preston North End, and he was a manager who worked a lot on defensive shape and that helped us get to the FA youth cup semi-final against Everton and the Lancashire cup final twice on the bounce losing to Manchester United on both occasions.

Another coach was Jim Harvey, who gave Banks his league debut as a teenager. “Jim gave me my debut at the age of 19 at Morecambe FC and playing against the likes of Ipswich and Oxford in the FA cup was a highlight. Jim played a passing brand of football that teams couldn’t live with and I had the pleasure to play with him as we’ll before he hung up his boots.

“But the biggest influence on my football his to be my parents. They took me up and down the M6 every weekend, and my mum even gave me her car when I was at Bury FC.”

Banks has been in outstanding form this season and he kept out new signing Jamie Serra, but he believes he will do well in the NPL next season. “Jamie has been first class since joining the club and it’s been like when I first joined ECU when Andy Petterson was playing and I had to be patient and wait for my chance,” he said.

“He’s been really sharp in training and done well in the reserves. With me retiring this is a perfect opportunity for him to be first team keeper next year and years to come.”

So what’s next for Andy Banks, he said he will still be around the club to pass on his experience in a coaching position. “I’ve had a brief chat with Dale (McCulloch) regarding next year and I’ve agreed to help him out and coach the keepers at the club, which I’m really looking forward too.”