Fremantle Dockers AFLW take head coach search to Seek after “unpopular” dismissal
The Fremantle Dockers‘ AFL Women’s team is still without a coach after axing Trent Cooper last month, with the club now trying a surprising method to fill the void.
On Monday, the club posted an advertisement for its senior coaching position on Seek, casting a wide net to appoint its next mentor.
In the listing, Fremantle said they are looking for someone who is “a passionate advocate of advancing women in sport and leadership” and “has the skills and experience to lead our AFL Women’s team to success”.
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Cooper departed the Dockers in November after he was not offered a contract extension.
In five seasons at the helm at Fremantle, the 48-year-old helped the team to four straight finals appearances. However, after missing the finals in season seven, Cooper was told his services were no longer needed.
“I disagree with the decision. I think a lot of people do disagree with the decision. So it’s an unpopular decision – doesn’t mean it’s the wrong decision, time will tell that,” Cooper told SEN WA of his shock sacking.
It was reported that former AFL player and Collingwood assistant Jordan Roughead was expected to take over the role from Cooper, but turned down the club’s offer.
With no other clear contenders, Fremantle has now taken its search to public employment marketplace Seek where coaches from outside the AFL system will have an opportunity to apply.
According to the advertisement, these are the requirements for the successful candidate:
- An ‘All of Club’ mindset where collaboration comes naturally
- Minimum of Level 2 AFL Coaching Accreditation – ideally has or is working towards, Level 3.
- Demonstrated coaching experience with successful Australian rules football teams.
- Strong leadership, communication, and people management skills.
- Knowledgeable about the modern AFL Women’s competition and environment.
- Capable of maintaining a working with children check and national police clearance.
The advertisement also provides a rare insight into the benefits of an AFLW coaching job.
While the method is not custom, this is not the first time an AFLW club has utilised Seek, with Carlton searching for inaugural coach Damien Keeping’s replacement on the employment website in 2018.
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