02/11/2015 12:46 PM
The Western New York Flash has announced the hiring of Daniel Clitnovici as the team’s newest assistant coach. Clitnovici will help Flash head coach Aaran Lines on the professional side and will also have a role within the WNY Flash Academy.
“We’re excited to bring Daniel here for a number of reasons,” said Flash general manager and head coach Aaran Lines. “He’s had success at the W-League level, he’s highly qualified as an assistant coach and will also have involvement with our youth Academy. We’re fortunate to find someone who is committed to making a home in the Western New York area, but someone who is believes in and is invested in our team’s current project.”
“I was contacted by Charlie Naimo and Aaran about the position and, everything just fell into place; it was meant to be. Our visions are similar. The direction the Flash is heading in is exactly what I want to be a part of,” Clitnovici said. “The Flash have some great plans and I am excited to be a part of those not only for the 2015 NWSL season, but for the future as well.”
A native of Australia, Clitnovici spent the 2014 season as the head coach of the Colorado Pride in the USL W-League, where he was named Coach of the Year. In its first season as a club, Clitnovici led the Pride to the Western Conference Championship game after a regular-season record of 9-2-1. Impressively, Clitnovici established a defense that did not concede a single goal on its home field and produced a fast-flowing attacking style of play that entertained fans league wide.
Clitnovici’s achievements and guidance to players at the Pride were very influential, as several players from his 2014 squad have gone on to play professionally in the USA and abroad.
Prior to joining the expansion club, he was the head coach of the Colorado Rapids Women’s team from 2011-13 where he went 25-10-3. During that span, Clitnovici was also the head coach of the Rapids’ U20 ladies side and guided the club to the 2012 USL U20 National Championship. It was the first piece of national silverware that the Colorado Rapids women’s organization had won.
Clitnovici has also served as the Director of Coaching for Northern Colorado Soccer Club, where he guided coaches, developed players and implemented US Soccer curriculums community-wide.
Before turning to coaching, he also played professionally for over 10 years including stints with Gold Coast United FC in Australia, Universitatea Craiova in Romania, Barnsley FC in England and Apollon Athinon in Greece. His professional career came to a close after the 2008-09 season, splitting time between Elche CF and CF Illicitano in Spain.
“The WNY Flash tradition is to strive for the best both on and off the field and that’s what I have always aimed for in my coaching career,” Clitnovici added. “It’s an honor to be accepted into the Flash family and to be given the opportunity to work with and guide such dedicated and talented players.”