Melbourne Heart coach John van ‘t Schip says Manchester City’s 80 per cent acquisition of the club is a massive lift for football in the country.
Football Federation Australia yesterday approved the deal, which sees the English Premier League team, and a Melbourne Storm led-consortium, take control of the A-League club.
The FFA’s David Gallop described the deal as a huge vote of confidence in the A-League, while City’s chief executive Ferran Soriano said they were “excited about the opportunity to make Melbourne Heart one of the most successful football clubs in Australia”.
The new ownership group says it will not be making any major announcements until mid-2014 out of respect for the coaching staff and players in the middle of the A-League season.
Van ‘t Schip says he expects Melbourne Heart to grow under the new owners.
“If we now get resources with the new owners and strength, we can grow as a club, then we will benefit,” van ‘t Schip said.
“You’re getting a lot of expertise in, you’re getting people in that want to grow the club, and I think that’s what it’s all about, to make the next step and grow the club.”
Van ‘t Schip says the new owners assured him any changes would not be made until season’s end, but flagged he would like to remain with the club.
“There’s no reason to panic, the new people said to work on the way that we’re doing the last few weeks and then in the end decisions will be made,” he said.
Van ‘t Schip took over as coach following John Aloisi’s sacking last month.
Melbourne Heart picked up their first win of the season last week, beating Newcastle 3-1, and play Adelaide away on Saturday.
He says players have been boosted by the win and acquisition.
“The confidence surely has grown (this week) and the boys have played a good game, also the games before … there was some progression.”
“I think the boys are really looking forward to play that game (against Adelaide).”