Wellington Phoenix and All Whites stalwart Ben Sigmund may have hung up his professional boots as an All White (2000-2014) and Wellington Phoenix player (2008-2015) but the Wellington resident’s love and involvement with football has not diminished.
Sigmund and local senior football club North Wellington AFC have joined forces to provide a unique blend of football and personal development opportunities for footballers in the western and northern suburbs. Mr Sigmund has joined North Wellington as its Football Development Manager and his aim is to help young footballers in particular further enjoy and improve their football experience while at the same time helping them plan for the challenges in life outside of sport.
North Wellington AFC is part of a football partnership involving Onslow and North Wellington junior football clubs, Newlands and Onslow Colleges. This Northern Hills Pathway aims to provide a seamless transition from first kicks through to Masters football with all 5 organisations joining together to enable a positive football experience for players of all ages and experience levels. Mr Sigmund’s Fully Committed programme dovetails into the on field experience and addresses a number of disciplines including attitude, communication, goal setting, resilience, career aspirations and financial literacy.
According to North Wellington Club Chairman, David Rayner, “We see the chance to work with Ben and provide some value added opportunities for young people as a real positive for everyone involved in the Pathway organisation. We have a part to play as the destination club for children and youth in the area and having Ben available is a partnership that we value.” According to Mr Sigmund “It’s been a pleasure to be involved with a grass roots football club that is thinking outside the square and is really going places on and off the field. I’m very much looking forward to working with the local community and helping to shape people’s future.” “North Wellington have demonstrated a sound vision for the future, and are working to lift our focus to be more professional” said Chairman, Rayner. “North Wellington have a very clear, cohesive pathway and plan for the future, which will be beneficial for players at all levels” said Sigmund.
Mr Sigmund is currently still playing football for Cashmere Technical until the end of the current season and according to Mr Rayner, North Wellington is hoping that Sigmund will be progressing his on field involvement with North Wellington’s Premier team in 2017. For more information on the club’s activities, go to www.northwellingtonfootball.