Red Devils 'behind the eight ball' but confident

BALLARAT Red Devils chairman Duncan Smith says the club is “behind the eight ball” compared to rival clubs chasing a place in the Victorian National Premier Leagues competition in 2014.

But the Red Devils continue to work progressively with the confidence they will be part of the new elite state soccer league, expecting to appoint a senior coach and general manager in the coming weeks.

The VNPL application period officially re-opened this week, with the Red Devils – and all other interested clubs – required to have final submissions lodged to Football Federation Victoria by Monday, January 20.

FFV is then expected to announce successful licence holders on Friday, February 7.

Smith said he was confident Ballarat would be granted a licence but admitted it was all a rush, with the season expected to start in late March.

“It’s not ideal, but it’s reality. The reality is this is the set parameters and a lot of clubs, especially Melbourne clubs, have got the jump on us in terms of players, coaches, sponsors and members,” Smith said.

“We are behind the eight ball but we are going to give it a fair dinkum crack.”

Smith said a general manager was likely to be announced in the first week of January and a senior coach the week after.

“(New football director) Danny (Milosevic) has already started talking to potential coaches – playing and otherwise – and he is making some good inroads there,” Smith said.

tim.oconnor@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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