Football Australia is pleased to announce that Miles Downie has been appointed Head Coach of the Futsalroos ahead of the forthcoming AFF Futsal Championship to be contested in Bangkok, Thailand.
Downie, who has extensive experience in Australian and Asian Futsal, has been appointed initially through to the end of 2022. Beyond his role as Head Coach of the Futsalroos, Downie will drive the development of Futsal in Australia to ensure that Futsal is more deeply integrated into Football Australia’s technical strategy and vision.
Downie is the current Head Coach of Futsal in New South Wales and has also acted as an Elite Futsal Fitness Instructor for the Asian Football Confederation since 2015.
He is also a former national team player having represented the Futsalroos between 2003 and 2010 – a period in which he played professionally for clubs in Brazil, Portugal, and Japan.
Football Australia Chief Executive Officer, James Johnson, said Football Australia is pleased to have appointed Downie as its Futsal lead as the organisation prepared for the AFF Futsal Championship.
“We are delighted to welcome Miles to Football Australia and believe that his appointment will reinvigorate the Futsalroos program and then help us drive our broader ambitions for Futsal in Australia,” Johnson said.
“Miles has impressed us with his vision and energy for Futsal in Australia and the Futsalroos, and we are delighted that he will join our team.”
“The Futsalroos will travel to Bangkok next month where they will compete in Group B of the ASEAN tournament against Vietnam, Myanmar, and Timor-Leste. I trust that Australia’s Futsal community will take great interest in this competition as the Futsalroos play their first competitive matches since late 2019,” he said.
Downie – who will be assisted by Football Queensland Futsal Head Coach Bruno Cannavan at next month’s AFF Futsal Championship in Thailand – said he is thrilled with the opportunity to lead the Futsalroos and make an impact on the sport at a national level.
“The Futsalroos Head Coach position is a role that I have been working towards for a long time,” Downie explained. “It is a dream come and while there is only a short period before this tournament, we’ll go to Bangkok and give it our very best.”
“There is a lot of excitement in Futsal circles regarding the participation of the Futsalroos at next month’s AFF Futsal Championship, and with a lot of exciting young players coming through in Australia, next month represents a great opportunity to start introducing some of them to international Futsal.”
“Having Bruno (Cannavan) as my assistant will be a big help. He knows the best players in Queensland and together, we’ll be working closely to identify talented players across the nation before we make our final selection for Thailand,” he said.
The AFF Futsal Championship 2022 will be played at the Huamark Indoor Stadium between April 3 and 12.
2022 will mark Australia’s sixth participation at an AFF Futsal Championship. The Futsalroos finished as Runners Up in 2007, 2013, 2014, and 2015.
The top three nations at the AFF Futsal Championship 2022 will secure qualification for the AFC Futsal Asian Cup 2022, which will be held in Kuwait in September and October this year.