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Interviews

Chris Weale: "As soon as Matt rang me I knew it was the club for me"

City's new Goalkeeping Coach is delighted to join the Grecians and get to work

21 June 2018

Exeter City’s new Goalkeeping Coach Chris Weale says he is excited to start working alongside Matt Taylor as the Grecians go into a new era at St James Park.

Weale, who had been playing and coaching at Dorchester Town last season, has a wealth of football experience having turned out for the likes of Yeovil Town, Bristol City, Leicester City and Shrewsbury Town.

But the 36-year-old is eager to take his first full time role in coaching and help the Grecians to a successful 2018/19 campaign.

Chris, who trained for his coaching badges alongside new City boss Matt Taylor, says he cannot wait to get going.

He said: “As soon as Matt rang me I knew it was the club for me. I’ve always kept an eye out for Exeter and what they are doing. This was the only club I was ever going to come to in order to start my coaching career.

“I’ve known Matt for three or four years. We did our coaching badges together and straight away I knew that he has something about him because of the way he approaches the game and his enthusiasm for the game. First and foremost, he is a really good human being and that goes a long way in football because it is a very cut-throat business but if you can remain true to your values, which he is doing, then it is great. I think he and the club are a perfect fit.”

Having played for a host of clubs up and down the Football League, Weale is keen to use his experience to help continue the development of the City youngsters, who have earned themselves excellent moves to higher leagues within England.

He continued: “My experience can only help. I’ve always studied the game, my game, and always reviewed everything. I’m a thinker and I like to analyse a lot. I’ve made mistakes, both on and off the pitch, but the biggest thing is to learn from them. Hopefully that can then help other people. I like mentoring, the holistic side of things, because it’s not just about what happens on the pitch but off the pitch as well. I want to help to develop these players as characters and human beings.”

Chris was also quick to praise the previous regime for the way that young players have emerged from the City academy, with reference to former Goalkeeping Coach, Mel Gwinnett, who played a huge role in the development of Christy Pym who went on to endure a stellar season last year as he picked up no less than six end of season awards.

He said: “Mel has done a very good job here because he has developed Christy Pym and James Hamon as well as other goalkeepers in the academy. Credit to him, he has done a fantastic job. Christy also deserves a lot of credit for the way he performed for a whole season which saw him pick up all of those awards. It can only help those academy goalkeepers to see that City are giving those young goalkeepers an opportunity to play.”

With a new era beginning at St James Park, Chris also thinks that people coming in with fresh ideas can only benefit the Grecians as they look to bounce back from successive Wembley defeats in the League Two Play-Off Final.

“I haven’t seen a great deal, but I think that can be a positive because I’m coming with fresh ideas with no opinions about anyone and I’m very open minded.” Chris said: “The players soon get over it. It takes two or three weeks, but you get over it and the enthusiasm for the game returns because it’s football. When pre-season comes you forget about what happened. It’s a fresh start for everyone.”


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