WESTERN Pride officials have stepped up their planning for next year's Australian Premier League competition by appointing astute footballer Pat Boyle as general manager.
Ipswich Football interim chairman Kym Wickstein said Boyle's business experience and knowledge of the game would be assets to the newly-formed regional organisation.
"Pat has been involved in football in the Ipswich region for over 23 years, playing with Coalstars and Ipswich Knights, captaining both clubs' senior teams," Wickstein said.
"He is very highly respected in the football community, not only in the Ipswich region but throughout the Brisbane area.
"He resides in the Ipswich area and has operated a successful business at Redbank Plains for many years."
Wickstein said Boyle's management and organisational skills would be vital for the franchise representing Western Spirit, Ipswich Knights, Ipswich City, Brisbane Force, Springfield United and Colleges United.
"He is still involved in coaching juniors and has a great passion for junior player development," Wickstein said.
Boyle said the professionalism of the Pride franchise attracted him to the position.
"The concept is great," Boyle said.
"For a long time, we've lost a lot of up-and-coming good kids as well as older players to Brisbane.
"Now we've got an opportunity to keep them."
An information session is scheduled for 7pm on Wednesday night at the Ipswich Girls' Grammar School to explain Pride's plans.
Boyle will report to the Board of Directors and have overall management of Western Pride Football Club on a day-to-day basis.