Socceroos legend Alex Tobin has joined Hills United FC with the aim of building a “first-class development” program at the club.
A resident of The Hills for the past 17 years, Tobin has lofty ambitions after taking up the role of technical director with the Brumbies.
He will work mainly with the youth programs and hopes Hills can be seen as the number one youth development program in the state.
“In the end it’s about producing players, coaches and running a youth development program that services the growing needs of The Hills, not just in football players but growing population,” Tobin said.
“It’s an established club now but it’s going to be a bigger club in the future. I want to work with the coaches to get them to operate at a very high level.
“Every club is about the players so we want to service them in the best way we can.”
Tobin is the fifth-most capped Socceroos player of all time and captained Australia on 30 occasions.
He also tallied 522 senior games in Australia over a 20-year career.
Since retiring he has been a coach with teams at a variety of levels, including as a Football NSW technical director over the past five years.
Tobin said it was hard to move on from Football NSW but looks forward to being more hands on with young players and coaches.
“I hope the kids aspire to play at the highest level possible,” he said.
“If you ask any nine-year-old who they want to play for, it’s the Socceroos or Real Madrid and we need to say that we’ll give you the best environment to be able to do that.
“I hope that the parents realise my experiences and specialties is in coaching youth programs, which is what I’ve been doing for the past five or six years with Football NSW.”
With Hills’ youth league teams already competing at the highest level in NSW, Tobin said it would be great to contribute to his local area.
“I live in the area, I have two sons who have both played for Hills United, I’ve had two sons who have both played for Baulkham Hills in the association space and I’ve coached at Baulkham Hills,” he said.
“I live here, love the area and I’m very well connected with the environment in the Hills. To be able to come in and make a meaningful contribution, it is fantastic and great to see the area expand the way it is.”
Hills United president Kazan Hadden said it was great to bring Tobin on board.
“Attracting people like Alex to the club is new for Hills but it’s probably a sign of the times and the perception of us as a club and a region,” he said.
“The culture we have built and are trying to build on is that we want to teach kids to play football and develop them. At the SAP and youth levels, we’re happy to sacrifice a few goals if we can help improve players, so that’s really our focus.”