Three Olympics and three world cups – goalkeeping coach from Taranaki made it to the world stage

Simon Eaddy attended Spotswood College from 1985-1989, and initially could not decide whether he wanted to pursue cricket or football.

VANESSA LAURIE/Item

Simon Eaddy attended Spotswood College from 1985-1989, and initially could not decide whether he wanted to pursue cricket or football.

With three Olympics and two FIFA World Cup football competitions under his belt, and a third World Cup on the way, it’s fair to say that former Spotswood College student Simon Eaddy is a know-it-all about goals.

The goalkeeping coach of the Canadian Men’s Soccer team visited his old high school on Monday to speak with students.

One of them is a top player, but has put a career in football aside.

“I was just saying, look at my experience,” said Eddy.

“Work hard to put yourself in a position where you have a lot of opportunities, and then make a decision.”

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Eaddy attended Spotswood from 1985-1989, and initially could not decide whether to pursue cricket or football.

Football won when he earned a place in the U-19 national team.

He later played for New Zealand’s first professional football club, Kingz FC, in the Australian National Football League and was in the National League All-Stars Squad in 2000, 2001 and 2002.

In 2002 he got his first taste of Canadian football after moving to play in their professional league for the Ottawa Wizards.

A year later, the Wizards won the Canadian Professional Football League unbeaten and Eaddy was Goalkeeper of the Year after conceding just 10 goals throughout the 2003 season.

Three years later, Eaddy returned to NZ to play for Waitakere United in the NZ Football championship.

“I have been with a Canadian for 21 years, and at that point we thought we were going back to New Zealand for good.”

But then top coach John Herdman entered the picture.

“At that time, she was the coach of the women’s under-20 team, where I started coaching..

“She then got a job as head coach for the New Zealand women’s team.”

The goalkeeper coach of the Canadian Men's Football team visits his old high school to talk to students about his career in football.

VANESSA LAURIE/Item

The goalkeeper coach of the Canadian Men’s Football team visits his old high school to talk to students about his career in football.

Eaddy soon joined Herdman in Canada as they took over the women’s team.

“Sport at that level is cruel, like downright cruel, and you have to have people you trust first and foremost.”

Simon Eaddy's advice for the upcoming footballer is to be

VANESSA LAURIE/Item

Simon Eaddy’s advice for the upcoming footballer is to be a “pioneer”.

She has helped Herdman achieve great results – leading the NZ Men team to the Olympics, and the Canadian women to two Olympics and two World Cups.

And now they have led the Canadian men’s team to their first FIFA World Cup since 1986 – when Eaddy was a student at Spotswood College.

His advice for future footballers is to be a “pioneer”.

“Instead of looking at the paths that are out there for you right now, explore what it actually looks like.”

Laura Davis

"Total troublemaker. Alcohol aficionado. Social media specialist. Friendly travel nerd."

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