Joe Mullen to take coaching role for ineligible Vidmar in ACL

MullenAdelaide United FC can confirm that Coach Aurelio Vidmar is not eligible to be registered as the club’s Head Coach for the AFC Champions League 2010.

The club was made aware of the situation after an announcement by the Asian Football Confederation (AFC), which states in its regulations that the registered Head Coach for all teams in the 2010 AFC Champions League must possess the AFC ‘A’ Licence, which Vidmar does not have yet due to reasons beyond his control.

Since joining AFC and adopting the AFC Coach Education curriculum, FFA has been conducting Pro A, B and C Licence courses in Australia, with the first courses being conducted in 2007.

Vidmar has been in regular communication with FFA’s Coach Education Department in an effort to complete the appropriate courses, however the fact that Vidmar had commitments in the ACL in 2007 and 2008 has made it impossible for him to attend the many weeks of attendance required.

Adelaide United Youth Team Coach Joe Mullen, who has the necessary coaching licences, will take on the Head Coach title for the AFC Champions League, although Vidmar will still be in charge of the team’s management.

“Further to today’s announcement by the Asian Football Confederation and statement made by Football Federation Australia, Adelaide United Youth Team Coach Joe Mullen will act in the capacity of Head Coach of the Adelaide United Football Club specifically for the AFC Champions League 2010 campaign,” Adelaide United CEO Sam Ciccarello said.

“Joe Mullen is qualified as an AFC/FFA ‘A’ level accredited coach, and has already completed Part 1 of the AFC’s Pro Diploma coaching certificate and is due to complete Part 2 in August this year.

“While Joe is qualified as a have the title of Head Coach, Aurelio, who is in his third year coaching the club and took the club to the Final of the AFC Champions League in 2008, will continue his role as senior coach.”

At the end of the 2007/08 season, Adelaide United proceeded almost immediately into the 2008 AFC Champions League and in effect, Vidmar has only had one off-season, in 2009, and in that short time he completed and passed the B Licence course.

Late in 2009, the FFA started a special Part 1 of the FFA/AFC ‘A’ Licence course, specifically for Vidmar and the other Hyundai A-League coaches needing A Licence accreditation. Vidmar has attended and satisfied all requirements to this stage and by February 19, he will have completed the necessary requirements for Part 1 of the course.

“The time required off season to take these courses is typically 2-3 weeks in duration, and are conducted in Sydney or Canberra,” Ciccarello said.

“Since we qualified for the 2010 AFC Champions League we have worked tirelessly with the FFA to seek ways for Aurelio to fully qualify and be able to coach in the ACL.”

Vidmar is due to undertake Part 2 of the course after the completion of the 2010 AFC Champions League Group Stage.

“I’m happy to help the club out and add my input in any way I can and in any capacity, so to help in this tournament will be great,” Mullen said on his appointment for the ACL.

Adelaide United’s first match of the AFC Champions League Group Stage is against the Pohang Steelers on February 24 at Hindmarsh Stadium.

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