Coach Jim Karatzas departs the Saints to join Pontian Eagles SC as the Head Coach of the First Team.
Jim Karatzas, 63, who played an instrumental part in the Saints State League 1 survival in 2021, has decided to leave the club to explore further opportunities elsewhere. Karatzas started coaching over 30 years ago at MA Hawks, the club that he was involved as a player for over 15 years. In 2010, he moved into coaching at the federation level for Adelaide Comets under 15's side, halfway through the season he was appointed Head Coach of the U19's.
Photo courtesy of Active Illustrated In 2013, after a few successful years coaching the U19's and Reserve teams of the club, he was appointed interim coach of the First Team (NPL SA side) for the remaining 10 games of the year. The following season he was appointed Head Coach of the First Team (NPL SA side), a position that he kept until June 2015. After 2 years at the NPL club Adelaide Comets, he took a brake from coaching and stayed out of the game until Paul Pezos (current Adelaide City FC Head Coach) called him to be his assistant coach, an opportunity that he embraced with open arms. In August 2018, he was appointed Head Coach of Adelaide Victory FC in State League 1. In 2019, he returned to West Adelaide Hellas this time as the Head Coach of the First Team, a stint that lasted only a few months. A few months later, he returned back to Adelaide Victory FC as an assistant coach. Karatzas, joined the Saints in 2021 as a coach of the First Team, during his tenure the club escaped relegation against all odds and the following season the team consolidated their status in State League 1. During this time the level of professionalism and brand of the club in and off the field increased significantly.
Photo courtesy of Active Illustrated
Jim Karatzas had this to say: "I want to thank the club for 2 great years together. I have enjoyed working with Markaj and his staff, what we were able to achieve in those last 2 seasons have been extraordinary. I have no doubts this club will progress to be one of the more respected and professional club in the state."
He continued with: "I wish everyone all the best for the season and beyond.
Photo courtesy of Eastern United Media Department
Manager Gabriel Markaj had this to say: "I would like to thank Jim for being part of our journey; not many people know the amount of effort and sacrifices that we have made in the last 2 years to turn around this football club and Jim was a key person in this turnaround, no doubts he was a massive part of our club and without him we wouldn't have achieved what we have achieved so far. For me it's sad to see Jim leave, as he was a huge for my self development as well as the team development and replacing him will not be easy. "
"I wish all the best and the door will always be open for his return in the future." he continued.
The club will soon start the process to complete the First Team coaching staff.