Mark Torcaso is unperturbed by the big shoes he has to fill after the Philippine women’s football team introduced him on Wednesday as the one to succeed fellow Australian Alen Stajcic as the Filipinas’ new coach.
“I think the critical thing is not to sort of compare with previous situations, just like in any role. In the end, it’s just a normal job life and someone comes in and done it their way,” Torcaso said in a virtual press conference that came hours after his appointment was announced.
It didn’t take long for the Filipinas to find the new man tasked to sustain the gains from Stajcic, who in 18 months was able to send the team to a landmark appearance in the Fifa Women’s World Cup—and win a game.
Stajcic left after the Filipinas’ last game in New Zealand to be the coach of the Australian men’s side Perth Glory.
Torcaso may not have the big credentials as Stajcic, but his resume reeks of success, particularly in stints in his home country.
The 42-year-old steered Western United to the Grand Final of the A-League Women’s season, eventually losing to Sydney FC. But the league recognized the way he guided the team to a runnerup finish and was named the league’s best coach.
Two of his players are currently with the Filipinas, defender Angie Beard, whose World Cup stint was her first tournament with the team and holding midfielder Jaclyn Sawicki.
His immediate tasks are the Hangzhou Asian Games and the second round of the Olympic Qualifying Tournament in the next two months as the Filipinas will hope to show that their impressive World Cup campaign isn’t just a one-off thing.
‘Aim for more success’
“My vision is obviously aim for more success that we can possibly have with this team,” he said. “And you know, it’s always important not to continue on or copy the same thing and [bring] in new things because sometimes you want to get more out of the players and your staff.”
“So my thing is to, first of all, access the surroundings and then probably have a better indication of how things will look after that. Hundred percent my intention is to make sure to be successful with this team and more importantly, for the players on the big stage, we give them another opportunity to represent the country, represent their families at the highest level,” he added.
Though he wants to get familiar with his new surroundings, Torcaso is obviously eager to produce favorable results as much as he can.
“Yes, I want to win. I am a winner. There’s no doubt about it. I’m a sore loser, actually. I’m that type of a loser, so I’ll be going with the mindset of wanting to win every game, regardless of the opponent. But I’ll probably want to assess the situation first hand.”
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