Propato’s commitment to coaching recognised

No byline (Teneille Watson) South Western Times
Juan Propato loves giving back to the region through soccer.
Camera IconJuan Propato loves giving back to the region through soccer. Credit: Teneille Watson

Soccer can open doors — just ask the winner of this year’s Wally Foreman Coach of the Year Award, Juan Propato.

“In my case, you can travel around the world, doing what you love,” Propato said.

Each year, the Wally Foreman Coach of the Year Award recognises a coach in the South West community for their commitment and achievements to sport. Propato said it was an honour to be recognised.

“It is special because I was not expecting it. To be nominated was special already but to win it — it is the first time football has won it,” Propato said.

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Since attending River Plate Football Club’s fabled youth academy, where he trained under some of Argentina’s top national coaches, Propato has been travelling the world sharing his love for the game.

His coaching career has taken him from Buenos Aires to his current base in Busselton, where he is Football West’s community participation officer for Leeuwin Naturaliste.

The 44-year-old has also coached in Cuba, New Zealand, Germany and Belgium.

In addition to growing the sport in the Leeuwin Naturaliste region, he is also volunteers with the South West Phoenix Football Club.

“I love so much the game that I want to give it back. Also, give back to the South West, to Bunbury and our region,” the charismatic coach said.

Propato enjoys seeing the confidence develop in players as they improve and their team has a good season.

“That happiness of them to develop into a better person or a better player, that brings so much happiness,” he said.

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