Downes gone from Cavs

Stephen Downes.

Green Gully’s tough start to the season has seen coach Stephen Downes and his coaching team depart the National Premier League club.

The Cavaliers announced on Wednesday that Downes and assistant coaches Steven Laurie and Tim Paton have departed the club by mutual agreement.

“Stephen Downes has been an integral part of Green Gully Soccer Club both on and off the field,” the club said in its statement.

“Downes joined the club as a player in 2011, a period during which he played a crucial role in securing a championship for the club. His outstanding performance in the 2011 grand final earned him the prestigious Jimmy Rooney Award for best on ground.

“In 2018, Downes took on the role of senior coach, leading the team through multiple seasons, including the challenging COVID-affected years of 2020 and 2021

“In 2019 and 2022, he took the club to semi-finals in the NPL competition and in 2022 to the last 16 of the Australia Cup competition.

“Green Gully Soccer Club is immensely grateful for the significant contributions Stephen Downes has made both as a player and as a coach. His leadership, passion, and unwavering dedication have left a lasting impact on the club. We extend our heartfelt thanks to Stephen and wish him all the best in his future endeavours.”

Downes last game in charge was on Tuesday night with the side losing its round six Australia Cup match to St Albans Saints, 1-0.

In the NPL, the Cavaliers were sitting in 10th spot with four wins from 14 games when the call was made.

Micheàl O’Rourke has been appointed as the Interim senior coach, and will be assisted by under-23 coach Andrej Maksimov while the club searches for a new coach.