New boss Dodd excited by Guam challenge

Friday, February 2, 2018

Deledo: New Matao boss Karl Dodd is relishing his first international role, with the Australian revealing his excitement at overseeing a programme encompassing both senior and junior national teams.

Dodd, whose playing career included spells in Australia, Hong Kong, Scotland and Romania, took charge of the Pacific Ocean side earlier this month after his appointment in late December.

His first competitive task will be to lead Guam, who have been absent from the international arena since November 2016, at the EAFF E-1 Championship preliminary round later this year.

 Speaking to Radio NZ, the former Brisbane Roar stopper revealed the opportunity to influence all levels of the game in Guam had appealed to him.

"It's the whole programme that we're overseeing, which is good because if I'm just coaching the men's national team there's not that many games in the year and I need to be kept busy," said the 37-year-old.

"So we have the Asian Football Confederation qualifiers as well with the Under 23s coming up next year for the Olympics and then the junior age groups as well, so I guess the thing that really enticed me was the fact you get to oversee the whole programme and get it up to the level that I would like it to be at."

Guam enjoyed a purple patch in 2015, when they surprised many throughout Asia by beating India and Turkmenistan and earning a draw against Oman during FIFA World Cup 2018 Russia qualifying, but a lack of international football since has seen them drop to 192nd in the world rankings.

However, Dodd, who joins fellow Australian and GFA Technical Director Belinda Wilson in Guam, said he would encourage the team to play confidently and proactively.

“"In terms of playing style, definitely on the front foot - I don't like taking a backwards step,” he said.

“We get out there and play intelligent football and try and score as many goals as we can, and being an ex-defender I don't like conceding so that's a given."

Source: Guam Football Association