The Football Federation of Samoa have hired Jess Ibrom as Technical Director.
The Brit has formerly been Technical Director of the Cook Islands FA, but comes to the Samoa job from the role of Head Coach of NZ Premiership side Tasman United.
He coached Tasman to their highest ever finishing position in the league of fifth, before the team folded prior to this season to join Canterbury United’s Premiership side.
Speaking to Football in Oceania Ibrom says he took the job due to the high potential in the country. Samoa is often regarded as the best of the weaker four nations in the OFC, which includes American Samoa, the Cook Islands and Tonga.
“I took the job due to the huge potential in Samoa to grow the game as well as the vision the President had”, Ibrom says.
“One of the biggest challenges will be bridging the gap between Samoa and the other Member Associations’s within the region. As well as what football might look like as we progress through the Covid situation.”
He’s hoping for growth within the game, who’s main competitor is rugby.
“I’m hoping to achieve mass growth across multiple areas including coach education, women’s football, international competition and national academies to name but a few.”
Especially women’s football is something Samoa can take big steps at, with a few changes. The senior women’s side made a good showing in the 2018 OFC Nations Cup and topped that off with taking the country’s first ever medal at football in the Pacific Games in 2019, when they finished third.
Now Ibrom has a small hope for a surprise World Cup appearance in 2023.
“The women’s game in this region has huge potential especially with the Women’s World Cup in 2023 being held in New Zealand and Australia. There’s a real push by FIFA to maximise the women’s game with huge support for us in Samoa to kick the game to new levels. In 2019 the Samoan national women’s team finished second at the Pacific Games. So we know the potential is there and we will be looking to implement fundamental changes that will only enhance its capacity to grow.”