Among their many engagements in the city on Wednesday last, Republic of Ireland manager Giovanni Trapattoni and FAI Chief Executive John Delaney launched Waterford United’s four-year Strategic Plan.
Nine months in development, the plan was assembled via the co-operation of the club’s planning team, nominees of the club board and representatives drawn from across the Waterford football spectrum
Current and former players, supporters’ groups, local business leaders and the club management also added their two cents during the consultation period.
The 14-page plan’s primary objectives include:
- Establishing and maintaining the club as a professional Premier Division entity
- Developing teams that “will bring sustained success and pride to the communities it serves”
- Contributing to the development of “multifunctional facilities suitable for a Premier League club and European competition that will benefit players, athletes, supporters and the people of Waterford and the South East”
- Establishing a “professional integrated structure” involving club directors, management, players, supporters, local businesses and partner organisations, and
- Supporting children’s sporting development “through participation in the establishment of a FAI Regional Development Centre at the RSC.”
Engaging with the local community has long been identified as an area that the club must do more in and the plan identifies several ways in which it aims to achieve just that.
The club will continue its collaboration with “the local Schoolboys Leagues and other key agencies to engage with the best young talent in the region, forging links with the players, their families, mentors, clubs and schools from an early age”.
The plan includes the aspiration of appointing a new Head of Youth Development, who will co-ordinate the development of young players via United’s support of the aforementioned Regional Development Centre.
Conscious of the need to engage with the media, Waterford United already “tailor all releases to coincide with local deadlines for maximum coverage”.
All major unveilings, (i.e. a new player or sponsor) will be supported by a press conference while the club website is being developed to include a “data collection point” in support of the Membership Scheme.