A-League goes back to the past with new boss
A sports administrator with experience in cricket and football has been named as the new head of the A-League, replacing Lyall Gorman.
Damien de Bohun might not be a massive name to the wider football public but he has held major roles in football before – as CEO of Football Federation Victoria from 2003 to 2004 and as Operations Manager of the A-League in its first season.
A former football player, coach and referee, the Melbournian will assume running of the A-League in August. He takes over from Gorman, who is now heading up the Western Sydney Wanderers.
Most recently, de Bohun has been executive general manager, game and market development for Cricket Australia from 2005.
There is no doubt de Bohun has a huge job to fill. Season 7 of the A-League had massive highs and lows, from marquee signings and increased crowds to dramas with Gold Coast United and the Newcastle Jets. Growth, along with stability, will sure be the mantra for Season 8.
de Bohun will work closely with FFA chief executive Ben Buckley, and a large emphasis for him will be on connecting the grassroots with the top professional competition.
The new chief has been heavily involved in Cricket Australia’s attempts to increase grassroots participation, and will surely bring his expertise into this area. Whether he can convert football participants into A-League fans, will be his number one challenge.
de Bohun is not an AFL convert, like Buckley, and his strong links with football should at least win the approval of A-League fans and the media.
A new convert to Twitter, it is hard to know what to expect from de Bohun’s tenure. But he has solid experience in top-level sports management, business and marketing, as well as a passion for the game, so he is ticking at least a few boxes early on.