Nerang Welcomes Exciting New Coaching Appointments For 2018 Senior Campaign

The 2017 season was one that delivered great success and a positive upward surge for Nerang Soccer Club with the Eagles narrowly missing out on promotion to the local Premier League. Following on from those achievements it is with great excitement that we would like to announce our new appointments in our senior men’s coaching roster for the 2018 season.

Nevertheless, our side is young and with a growing pool of emerging talent coming through from club’s training academy – Academy of Football Australia – the future prospects for further success and growth for the Eagles are looking exceptional.

Nerang Eagles are a proud club with a long history of success here on the Gold Coast, in the Brisbane leagues and beyond – and on that note we are proud and excited to welcome the following new appointments to our coaching staff.

Filling these roles in 2018 will be our Firsts Coach is the highly accomplished Sam Saif (via Wynnum’s Wolves FC and Sheffield United Academy) with his assistant Paul Edwards (also via Wolves FC), and taking on our Reserves Coach position will be Ivan Castro (via Merrimac and Burleigh Soccer Clubs and Uruguay).

The appointment of Sam Saif and his assistant Paul Edwards will see Nerang Soccer Club equipped with some of the highest qualified and experienced coaches in the entire Football Gold Coast district, and their proven record of achievement is testament to the strong work ethic and skill set they will be bringing to our club.

On behalf of the entire Nerang Eagle’s Soccer Club, our members, players, parents, staff and supporters – we would like to extend a very warm welcome to our new coaching team and we wish them an enjoyable, rewarding and successful time ahead as part of our organisation and our club’s proud history.



SAM SAIF – Head Coach

Sam Saif began his coaching career with the famous Sheffield United Football Club in England, between 1991 and 2006 where he held several roles including being the Assistant Academy Director and In-Service Coach Educator to the academy’s various coaches. He has coached at several Australian clubs however his tenure at Brisbane club Wolves FC delivered unparalleled achievements and success for the club in the Brisbane Premier League. Sam continues to be a revered and sought-after mentor and instructor for other coaches, a published author of coaching technique books, as well as a highly successful football coach wherever he directs his energy.



Sheffield United Football Club (English professional club)

Assistant Academy Director (U12s to U16s) & Assistant Coach U19s
Date: 1997-2006
Coaching elite players for the football academy covering all age groups from 8-16 years including full time professionals 16-19 years.

In-Service Coach Educator
Date: 1991- 1995, 1997-2006

Brisbane Wolves FC (Brisbane Premier league)

Head Coach & Youth Development Officer for Premier, Reserves & Youth
Date: 2007-2014

  • Awarded ‘Coach of the Year’ 2009, 2011, 2014 by Brisbane Coaches Association
  • Brisbane Premier League (BPL) Champions – 2011, 2014
  • BPL Grand Final Champions – 2009, 2010, 2012
  • BPL Grand Final Runners Up – 2011, 2014
  • BPL League Runners Up – 2010, 2012, 2013
  • Cup Runners Up – 2009, 2011

Mitchelton FC

Head Coach
Finished third in the BPL, the club’s highest achievement in 95-year history


Accreditation / Awards / Qualifications

  • AFC A Licence – 2008 (Top Asian football coaching accreditation)
  • FFA Advanced A License – 2008 (Top Australian coaching accreditation)
  • UEFA A Licence – 2000 (Top European football coaching accreditation)
  • NSCAA, Premier Diploma – 2004 (Awarded a ‘Distinguished Pass’ by the National Soccer Coaches Association of
    America. Achieved 94% for the highest award in the USA.)
  • FA Youth Licence (17-21 years) – 2004 (This is a prerequisite for all UEFA “A” License coaches working in professional
  • FA Coach Educator Certificate Award (Level 1 & 2) – 2002
  • FA Advanced Coaching Award – 1995
  • FA Treatment of Injury Course – 1996
  • FA Emergency First Aid Course – 1997
  • SAQ International In House Trainer
  • FA Child Protection Accreditation – 2002 (renewed every 3 years)


PAUL EDWARDS – Assistant Coach

Paul Edwards has been a long-time assistant coach under Sam Saif, and the prominent pair are returning to coach together at Nerang in 2018. Paul is himself a highly qualified and experienced football coach who shares a wealth of previous success and vast experience as a football coach and trainer. Paul is an exceptional leader both on and off the field and has held high ranking committee positions throughout his career, assisting coaches, players and clubs to find unity and success in their football pursuits.


Brisbane Wolves FC (Brisbane Premier league)

Assistant Coach

Five time assistant grand final coach, double Cup finalist, two times Premiership winner in BPL

Eastern Suburbs Football Club


Division 1 Championship Winner 2003 & Premier Youth Team Grand Finalist 2001

Dartford FC

Youth coach

London FA Youth Cup final 1999


Qualifications / Accreditation

Paul currently holds both a UEFA B Licence and and AFC B Licence coaching accreditation.



IVAN CASTRO – Reserves Coach

Ivan’s football history is extensive to say the least, having played as a semi-professional junior at one of South America´s most successful football clubs, Club Nacional de Football of Uruguay. In Australia Ivan played with various Premier League clubs from Sydney and Gold Coast. His coaching career began in 1997 with Club Deportivo Maldonado in the Uruguayan first division as an apprentice coach with the under 15 squad. He has also coached in Uruguay for Club Atletico Barrio River 33’s under 20s squad and Club Atletico San Carlos’ under 15 and under 17 squads. In Australia he has held various coaching positions for several prominent clubs including junior, youth and senior levels, both men’s and women’s teams.


Ivan has played at and coached at a wide range of clubs both in Australia and in Uruguay, including his time playing in the NSW Premier League and Gold Coast Premier League competitions. More recently he coached at Burleigh Heads Soccer Club and in 2017 at Merrimac Football Club.


Accreditation / Qualifications

  • FFA C License – 2013
  • FFA Senior Level (Coach ID: 1825488) – 2010
  • Intermediate Coaching General Principles Cert (SEAL Sports Education and Learning, Brisbane – 2009
  • Youth License (The National Coaching Scheme. Queensland, Australia) – 2003
  • Level 1 Coaching Cert (The National Coaching Scheme. Melbourne, Australia) – 1996