Wodonga Heart's new president has vowed to build on the club's unprecedented junior success this year by putting the infrastructure in place to sustain competitive senior football.
Anton Maas, having succeeded Michael Hughson at the head of the club, was thrilled to see the under-13 and under-15 boys win the Heart's first ever league championships in 2021.
But with Heart the only AWFA club not represented in the men's Division 1 this year, the Dutchman knows there is plenty of work ahead.
"I am very keen for that to happen," Maas said.
"I have to start talking to other people about why they're so successful and I need to talk to a few people from the past, who have been here, because I've come through miniroos and junior football.
"I've never been part of senior football so it will be a steep learning curve for me but with my football background, I'm pretty confident that with the contacts I have, I can put the infrastructure in place so that we can attract good senior players.
"It's always been an Achilles heel for the club, because our senior set-up was not so good.
"That's one of my targets, to make sure that when these juniors come through the ranks, they have a pathway to go into senior football with a few players there waiting for them who can be their mentors.
"It will not happen overnight, it will take a bit of time, but we'll start working on it.
"Maybe next year will be too soon - it's December already, so we're pushing it - but I will try."
Maas moved to Australia in 2005, has lived in Wodonga since 2015 and is now heading into his sixth season as part of the Heart set-up.
One of AWFA's rep coaches, he's witnessed first-hand the rapid development of junior players.
"This year was really amazing," Maas said.
"Wodonga Heart is a fairly new club and this was the first time we actually won the league - and we did it twice.
"Plus, our under-12s got runners-up with a really young team so there's a lot of potential there.
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"We're going to lose one player to Murray United but it looks like the rest of those players are coming back next year so that's really encouraging.
"The reputation of the club is increasing.
"When we talk to parents and friends from other clubs, they can really see we are trying to build it up from the bottom."
Maas, a miniroos coach for the last five years, stepped up as Heart's coaching co-ordinator this year.
"We have this amazing group of parents together with kids and they've been together since they were nine, so in the last five years we've worked hard to get where we are now," he said.
"Now we're actually achieving something. We didn't expect it but these kids have just gone from strength.
"Coming from the Netherlands, the orange shirt was my link.
"The club's been so accommodating and I'm trying to give something back."
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