Berg appointed Rep Team manager

By Danny Caro, October 22, 2010
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Man with a plan: Danny Berg is keen to unleash young and fresh talent

Man with a plan: Danny Berg is keen to unleash young and fresh talent

Danny Berg is the new manager of the JC MSFL Rep Team.

Head coach at Redbridge Jewish Care A, Berg, 26, is relishing the prospect of rubbing shoulders with the top footballers in the capital.

Berg's management team will feature FC Team manager Mitch Young as his assistant, Leyton Orient coach John Hyatt and Tony Gold, the London Lions manager, who led the Rep team to glory several years ago.

Berg has worked closely with players from Chigwell Athletic and Redbridge Jewish Care over the past five seasons. Now, working alongside Sam McCarthy at Redbridge and is confident of making a strong showing.

MSFL chairman David Wolff said: "We think that Danny is the right man for the job. He's got all the credentials and I think he'll do a fine job for us. We wish him luck.

"He has got a great deal of experience playing at a high level, is an excellent coach, a nice demeanour and a good man-manager. He's well qualified to do the job."

Commenting on the problems that the Rep team had last season, when they fielded ineligible players in the final, Wolff said: "The league will ensure that registration criteria are met and players are playing regularly in the MSFL. The league management committee will put in a watching brief. That's the safeguard we're putting in place."

The MSFL will line up alongside the Turkish Football Federation, the North London Sunday League, Cypriot League and London & Kent Border League in a group of five with the top two meeting in the final.

The MSFL will use Wingate & Finchley's Abrahams Stadium for home games and are scheduled to start at home to the Turks on November 16.

Q & A with Danny Berg

Q: How do you feel about being appointed Rep Team manager?

A: "It's an absolute honour to be named rep team manager. I feel very proud and can't wait to get started. I assisted Jonathan Kestenbaum a couple of years ago which was great experience for me so now to be managing the team is great. I'm looking to get a fresh, young squad together with a mix of experience players.

"I want to get some lads who have never played in the rep team before involved. There are a lot of players out there who were being overlooked because of the team they have played for or because they aren't a name in Jewish football, so this season I'm going to get some young players some game time at this level and some more experience. We, as a Jewish League, have won this competition before so there's no reason why we can't do it again."

Q: How many players in the league do you think are pushing for a place in the squad?

A: "I've got a list of about 25 players at the moment and it looks like all of them could play a part in this year's Rep side as we have four tough games, but if I can get a set 11-16 players then great but I'm sure there will be boys that can't make it for work reasons and injuries etc, so it's good to have a big strong squad and I'm sure when called upon, I'll make sure they are the right type of player to step in. The squad will be a fresh talented squad."

Q: Are you looking outside of the Premier Division?

A: "Yes. I've had a look at some teams and spoken to quite a few managers outside the Premier about their players and seen some games, but the main bodies of the side will be the best Premiership players that can step up to the next level."

Q: Tell me a bit about your managing/coaching background?

A: "I've been with Chigwell and now Redbridge managing and coaching for the past five seasons, I really enjoy both sides to the game and worked with some great people. I have a great relationship with Sam McCarthy and were working really well together this season to bring home the league to east London. We're currently leading the way and with the squad we have this season I can see us going all the way."

Q: Which qualities are you looking for in a Rep Team player?

A: "I'm looking for players that can step up a level physically and ability wise. The Rep team level is very similar to Spartan/Ryman level so players need to think quickly, rather than dwell on the ball like they do on a Sunday.

"It's a complete step up to the level on a Sunday and most teams have Saturday players involved in there squads so it will be very tough but I'm going to aim to get a team with togetherness, talent and belief and a team that can get the job done."

Q: What do you think about what happened in the final last year?

A: "I'd rather not talk about it. It's in the past and were looking to the future."

Q: Are you confident of the MSFL putting in a strong showing in the competition?

A: "Yes, I'm very confident from what I've seen this season. Tony Gold won this cup a few season back and also we went all the way last season so there's no reason why we can't go on and win it again."

Q: Who are you planning to add to your management team?

A: "Mitch Young will be my assistant. He has done extremely well building up FC Team. His Saturday team are currently sitting top of the Middlesex County League which is a very competitive league and his Sunday team are top of Division One. Mitch has some great ideas and he's another young hungry Jewish manager that's looking to gain more experience and what a great way to gain some by running the Rep side.

"My coach will be John Hyatt who coaches professionally at Leyton Orient, I've known him for a long time and he's a great coach who is working his way up the ladder in the professional game.

"Tony Gold should be with us match days if he's around. Everyone knows Goldy's achievements in management and how passionate Goldy is. He's my current manager at Lions where as a team we are doing really well in the Spartans Leauge. Goldy has won this cup before so he knows what is required at this level."

Last updated: 10:16am, October 22 2010