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HAMILTON THUNDER MAKES ADJUSTMENT TO LEADERSHIP

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HAMILTON THUNDER MAKES ADJUSTMENT TO LEADERSHIP

Unfortunately, after just two weeks as head coach for the Hamilton Thunder, Ivan Djalma Markovic has decided to return to Croatia due to unexpected health concerns.

NEW COACH:

Manuel Gonçalves Gomes, known as Prof. Neca has been named as The Hamilton Thunder’s Head Coach. Prof. Neca took over the team Tuesday Night, and brings with him over 20 years experience with 1st and 2nd Division Portugal. His accomplishments include three-time runner-up of the First National Division, Portuguese Cup Trophy with Benfica, and quarterfinals in the Champions League and UEFA Cup. In 2002, Prof Neca helped lead the Portuguese National Team to the Korea/Japan World Cup.

Thursday Night, Prof. Neca will be on the turf with the Hamilton Thunder as they face the Western Conference’s first place team, Brampton Hitmen. Only one goal against separates the two teams in the standings with both teams holding a 4-1-3 record. Prof. Neca does not intend to make any changes to the team line-up choosing instead to focus on making small adjustments to individual players approach to their play. Prof. Neca feels it would be counter productive to make major changes at this time. Kick-off 8:30 PM, Brian Timmis.

This guy sounds really good

www.cpsl.ca

www.hamiltonthunder.com

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Theres a big write up in the Hamilton Spec about this. There new coach,Manuel Goncalves Gomes was the assitant coach for portugal in the 2002 world cup! he also coach many portugal teams andcoached luis figo and rui costa. Of the four croatia players thath came with Markovic from croatia only one has been singed with the thunder, defender Peter Dajak. One of them is going to play with toronto croatia and the other for hamilton croatia.

www.cpsl.ca

www.hamiltonthunder.com

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Hamilton Spectator article - Thunder coach returns to Croatia

by Elias

Thursday, August 7, 2003.

Thunder coach returns to Croatia

By Josh Brown

Special to The Hamilton Spectator

Manuel Goncalvez Gomes has taken over as coach of Hamilton Thunder.

After just three weeks on the sidelines, Hamilton Thunder coach Ivan Markovic has left the team and returned to Croatia due to unexpected health reasons.

Markovic took over from Duncan Wilde who resigned in late July because of differing philosophies with team management. The 74-year-old Croatian soccer legend only coached one game for the Thunder -- a 3-0 loss to London City and leaves the team in second place in the Canadian Professional Soccer League's western conference at 4-1-3.

"I know his quality and what he could do," said Thunder chairman and CEO Rocco Lofranco. "It's a big loss."

But it didn't take Lofranco long to work his contacts and land another impressive big name from the international soccer scene. Portugal's Manuel Goncalves Gomes joined the team Tuesday and becomes the franchise's third coach in three weeks. He's joined by new assistant Michael Francisco.

Lofranco is hoping that the third time is a charm.

"He's very quiet ... the opposite of Markovic," he said. "He's a professional, well educated and knows how to communicate with people."

Gomes has more than 20 years of coaching experience including stints with clubs in Portugal's first and second division.

He coached Benfica to the Portuguese Cup and tutored top talent such as Luis Figo and Rui Costa as assistant coach of Portugal's national team at the 2002 World Cup in Korea/Japan.

The 52-year-old has only practised with the club twice but thinks he has enough of a feel for tonight's critical game against the western conference leaders -- the Brampton Hitmen. Both teams share identical records but the Thunder trail the Hitmen by one in the goals-against category. Kickoff is at 8:30 p.m. at Brian Timmis Stadium.

"I think the players are very good technically," said Gomes, also known as Professor Neca.

"I don't have a good evaluation yet, but I think the players are good quality."

"Now the work begins. I think the team is going to improve. I think I have good experience and can help the players improve."

Gomes is committed to the Thunder for the rest of the season but isn't sure about next year since he has other options in Europe, Africa and the Middle East.

Players seemed focused at last night's practice despite all of the front-office juggling in the past month. Forward Kevin de Serpa said he noticed a positive change from his teammates the day they met Gomes.

"There was big respect for him because of his reputation and his resumé," said de Serpa. "He's coached players that are high class and a lot of big names.

"He's a player's coach for sure. He understands what players need and what players go through. He's perfect for the team."

Players are anxious to get back on the field after a two-week layoff between games.

The team has been holding regular practices in anticipation for tonight's big match. And Gomes already has the squad fired up.

"He's a big-time motivator and everyone's motivated," said de Serpa. "I think there is going to be a big shock for people who come watch the game."

Notes: Of the four players who accompanied Markovic from Croatia only defender Petar Dajak will remain with the Thunder. Striker Mario Zupetic and midfielders Vedran Bacek and Zeljko Dukic have found roster spots on Toronto Croatia and Hamilton Croatia.

www.cpsl.ca

www.hamiltonthunder.com

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Ok let's use some common sense here. Do you really think that someone who coached portugal in last year's WC and coached all these teams in portugal, would suddenly leave that and come to coach Hamilton of the CPSL. Am i the only one that finds that very strange. If it is true then there has to be a story behind it.

THE TRUTH SHALL SET YOU FREE

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Ok let's use some common sense here. Do you really think that someone who coached portugal in last year's WC and coached all these teams in portugal, would suddenly leave that and come to coach Hamilton of the CPSL. Am i the only one that finds that very strange. If it is true then there has to be a story behind it.

THE TRUTH SHALL SET YOU FREE

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That's all a f... joke!. They think we are stupid, and try to sell us so much ****! The worst of all, three coaches in nine games. It is a big show for Ferari and his son. The players getting tired and angry, some of them thinking about transfer to another team. The best for Hamilton and it's soccer fans would be a new change to the leadership. Ferarri should fire himself !

PLEASE SELL THE TEAM TO SOMBODY WHO KNOWS SOMETHING ABOUT SOCCER AND STICK WITH A DIFFERENT BUSINESS!

cheers

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quote:Originally posted by THE_TRUTH

Ok let's use some common sense here. Do you really think that someone who coached portugal in last year's WC and coached all these teams in portugal, would suddenly leave that and come to coach Hamilton of the CPSL. Am i the only one that finds that very strange. If it is true then there has to be a story behind it.

I agree with you here. There's something funny going on. It's not just the fact that this guy is coaching Hamilton, it's also how fast they managed to get him after Markovic left. I mean, it was almost instantaneous. How do you get a guy with Gomes' resumé to coach in the CPSL just like that?

The other thing I'd like to comment on is how three of the four players who came over from Croatia ended up signing with ethnic Croatian teams. Ethnic teams, especially in the CPSL, are not good.

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