Sport

'Some things will have to change,' says Duckie

…As much travelled coach returns to Waterhouse FC

BY HOWARD WALKER
Senior staff reporter
walkerh@jamaicaobserver.com

Wednesday, November 08, 2017

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Former Reggae Boy Assistant Head Coach Donovan Duckie has returned to Waterhouse Football Club for a second stint, and he knows the job of changing the fortunes of this struggling club is a huge one, but he says he is up to the task.

Duckie, who also served as Jamaica's Under-20 head coach, has replaced Glendon “Admiral” Bailey, who resigned last week after a series of poor results.

The new coach plans to shake things up a bit in an effort to first get the team away from the relegation zone, stabilise them, and return them to their former glory days.

“If you keep doing the same things the same way and expect a different result, that's the meaning of insanity,” Duckie told the Jamaica Observer on Monday following his first training session.

“The objective is to take them out of relegation and build a solid platform, get them somewhere in mid-table, and once I stabilise the team, anything is possible,” he added.

The 42-year-old Duckie, who parted ways with Humble Lion in July, noted that Waterhouse have not been doing well for quite a while and he is hoping to get back that winning mentality to Drewsland.

Waterhouse are currently 10th in the Red Stripe Premier League with seven points from eight games, inclusive of one win, four draws, and three defeats. They are just one point above the relegation zone occupied by Boys' Town and Sandals South Coast, with six and three points, respectively.

Waterhouse finished eighth in 2016 and ninth in 2015 and have changed a number of coaches in-between. Their last premier league title was in 2006.

“They are not struggling for this season alone, they are struggling the season before, and that means some things will have to change. I am up to the challenge. It's going to be very tough and challenging, very demanding, but the fans also have to be patient and understand that I am going to try to imprint a style of play, a stable system of play, and they will have to give it some time but the players will have to understand that they will have to act quickly,” Duckie pointed out.

“I wasn't the one who prepared the team for competition so in terms of my philosophy, they might be different or some things might be slightly different from those that were set before me. So I will have to wait and see how quickly these players adapt to my style of coaching,” he added.

Waterhouse have been a tough place to coach as expectations are high and coaches are normally under pressure at Drewsland to deliver.

But with a CV that reads Star Cosmos, St George's SC, Portmore United, Sporting Central Academy, Montego Bay United, St Mary Technical, Clarendon College, plus the Jamaica Under-20s, Duckie is ready for the challenge.

“You will never get away from that, the expectation is always high. Waterhouse is a wonderful community; they love to see when the team is winning because history has dictated that they are used to trophies,” Duckie noted.

“This is my second stint. I was there when they came second and third in two consecutive seasons. It's a lot of work because it must be a reason why this team is struggling for two years now, so we have to change the method of how they operate there to effect [a] different result,” he reiterated.

“At the end of the season, I would want to see them as a force to be reckoned with. A solid foundation, a team that is hard to beat, one that can be competitive in the league, And if they win the title, that would be a big bonus and that would mean they have adapted very quickly,” he added.

“There are a lot of exciting players there, but very young. They have the potential to do well in the premier league, but premier league is a league where experience values a lot. There is a good amount of experience on the roster, but the average age is pretty young and I think some shopping will have to be done in January,” Duckie ended.

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