Brier talks the talk with Bernd Stange

Brier talks the talk with Bernd Stange

Posted on November 25, 2016 in 'News'

ECU Joondalup committee member Keith Brier was a guest as former East Germany and Perth Glory coach Bernd Stange spoke at his book launch at Dorrien Gardens on Tuesday.

“It was an absolute delight to put it mildly,” English-born Brier said. “With all the Perth TV and radio crews present it just shows how much this charismatic man can attract the media interest. Bernd captivated us all at the press conference, with a few of his stories about coaching and his world travel experiences.

“That was followed by a book launch ‘Bernd Stange – The Coach who knew too much’, a biography by Thomas Mackay, a fellow Hall of Fame committee man. Bernd took the lectern and charmed us all again with his broken English, more wonderful stories. I recommend to every football person that you read the book, there is a lot more to this man than we ever knew.”

Brier has been extremely busy along with the rest of the Hall of Fame Committee ahead of Saturday’s event, but he said it’s all come together, and should be a great night.

“It was a huge challenge indeed, but well worth the effort,” he said. “There is just a few last minute tweaks to the event and we are ready to run on Saturday night. We are very lucky to have people in our football family who are in the position to sponsor our event, without them it would have been a non-starter.

“We are set for a record attendance of over 435 guests and it promises to be one of, if not the greatest celebrations in 120 years of football in our state. Bernd Stange and Les Murray are our guest’s speakers on the night, it’s all set to go and I’m really looking forward to it.”

There are some great names on the role of honour over the years, and Brier said there are more to come and he said it’s been a great experience looking back at previous winners. “

“Lots of notables have been inducted in the various Hall of Fame awards, but they keep coming. I think we could fill a football bible with all the people who fit the criteria for induction,” he said.

“Many are before my time in Australia, but our historians Mel Moffat and Richard Kreider are always on hand to tell a few stories and put me in the picture. After over 12 months on the committee I feel like I know them all personally.

“Some early Perth Glory team players are being inducted on Saturday night, and they will get to meet up with the old coach, should be great to watch.

“On a personal note I’m very pleased for Andy Petterson and Willie Kelly from ECU Joondalup being inducted. I hope they induct Pedders early or he may drop off for a quick nap. Willie should be OK, he can go till early morning, I know that for sure, having been there and done that with him – Dare I say never again – lol.”

The 71-year-old played a lot of football back in the UK, and still played 5-a-side as a 52-year-old in Perth. “I’ve played football for as long as I can think back. I played junior, intermediate and senior all through school days, all for the same school – Armley National in the suburbs of Leeds,” he said.

“I played right wing, but when I left and started work as a printer I didn’t play again until I was 20. It was a just a pub team who my dad said were looking for players. At number seven again we had a good season and went undefeated. I played there for one season only. Meanwhile my old school mates had all stuck together and had been in the local Sunday League for 4 seasons.

“I joined up with them and had 4 seasons. We went undefeated for the first two and also lifted the Sunday league Cup in my second season. Then I went play for Farnley in the Leeds Red Triangle Senior Division.

“ECU President Steve Wheatley also played with Farnley a bit after I packed it in with back trouble. I was transformed from a right winger into a Left or right full back or occasionally as the old right half. A different game altogether from right wing.”

ECU are on the up after a good season, and Brier said he was sure the coaching staff will be looking for another improvement in 2017. “Last season was more than we ever could have expected, and we just fell short at the last hurdle,” he said.

“I think 2017 should be a cracker and I just can’t wait for it to come around. Securing the services of our key personnel was essential and it happened. I think we are all set for another good tilt at silverware. With player competing for selection all up and down the park it will bring out some good performance from the squad.

“The Coaching and fitness teams will keep our boys in tip top shape I’m sure. Also with a swag of youngsters pushing for selection I’m a happy man with the set up.”