Chalmers: Clan coach search on hold

Clan's Chief Operating Officer Gareth Chalmers says the coronavirus pandemic has affected the search for a new coach (PHOTO: Al Goold)

Glasgow Clan Chief Operating Office Gareth Chalmers says the hunt for a new coach is on hold, but is dependent on when the country recovers from the coronavirus pandemic.

It’s been two months since Zack Fitzgerald parted company with the club and the search for his replacement has taken its time, perhaps helped by Covid-19, which has led to uncertainty on when, or if, we’ll see a new season happen.

However Chalmers is reluctant to shake hands, so to speak, with a new incumbent once there’s a plan in place to restart, not just from the Elite League, but from guidance from the UK and Scottish governments.

“The focus continues to escalate from searching for a new head coach, ultimately to the immediate future of the club,” Chalmers told British Ice Hockey.

Zack Fitzgerald left Glasgow Clan two months ago (PHOTO: Al Goold)

“Let’s be explicit, we’re no different to a lot of professional sports, the current period is going to be one of the most demanding in the history of the club, the EIHL and the professional game in the UK – this current climate is game changing.

“Right now, we currently aren’t in a position to appoint a head coach until we have some clear defined start and end dates for 2020/21. 

“It wouldn’t be fair on any coaching candidates to proceed any further forward.  We’re working to various different plans and once we have a better understanding from the British and Scottish governments, that’s when we’ll be in a position to progress further.”

One man who won’t be going to Glasgow is experienced coach Luciano Basile, who revealed in an interview with new club HC Pustertal that Clan was an option.

Asked why he chose the Alps Hockey League side, he said: “I had an offer from Glasgow. Glasgow Clan is not really a club, but a franchise like the NHL.

New HC Pustertal coach Luciano Basile was in talks with Clan (PHOTO: France Sport)

“But I was looking for a club where my family can also be happy. In Bruneck I can work as a trainer and my children can go to school or kindergarten.”

Chalmers admitted there had been contact with the 60-year-old Canadian, who won the French championships with Gap and Brainçon among others, but insists no offer had been made.

He added: “Basile is someone I know well.  He is a very good and very experienced head coach and had success in both Brianćon and Gap with low budget teams and is someone we’ve looked at over the past few years. 

“But he is one of many head coaches candidates that we’ve had initial discussions with. However just to clarify, no one has been offered the job and no one has received an official contract offer from the club.”

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