SOLID FOUNDATION: Western Pride APL head coach Kasey Wehrman is happy with the open team players trialling for next year’s new state competition.
SOLID FOUNDATION: Western Pride APL head coach Kasey Wehrman is happy with the open team players trialling for next year’s new state competition. Claudia Baxter

Pride coach encouraged by regional talent for APL

FORMER international player Kasey Wehrman is encouraged by the regional talent he's seen trialling for next year's APL state competition.

As he prepares to start training early next month, the Western Pride coach has 14 players already in contention for his 20-man roster.

Among those is versatile Ipswich player Lincoln Rule, who has impressed with the Ipswich Knights and Western Spirit in recent seasons.

"Lincoln was probably the one that stood out the most to me," Wehrman said, rating him an attacking right back option "using his pace and vision".

"I thought he was exceptional and not far away from even playing in an A-League type team."

A number of other footballers who played Division 1 last season have also been trialling for the new senior side.

Wehrman said Ipswich-bred youngsters like Jay Kitching were from good pedigree and worthy of consideration.

The Knights' Golden Boot winner Peter Drager and Spirit's American import goalkeeper Steve Purdy are other players in the mix.

"I'm really happy," the former A-League midfielder said of the players aiming for higher level football.

"I've got about 14 players out of the trials. There's about five spots to fill. I'll leave them open."

Wehrman will be a player/coach.

"We mightn't be the strongest team but we'll be very organised and very well drilled," the former Newcastle A-League player said.

"I can assure you we'll be doing something a little bit different here - up the ante with professionalism."

Wehrman is planning to start building his playing system from his first training session on December 6, most likely at the Briggs Road Sporting Complex.



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