19/04/2024

Virgo coaching with Coorparoo AFC. (Photo: Coorparoo AFC/Instagram)

Retired AFLW star Sam Virgo will make coaching history on Saturday, coaching a senior men's side for the first time.

Retired Lion and Sun Sam Virgo will make Aussie rules coaching history on the weekend.

After acting as an assistant coach for the Coorparoo Kings senior men’s side in QFA Division One, Virgo makes the jump into the senior role on Saturday.

We spoke to Virgo earlier in the year after she announced her AFLW retirement, and she spoke about the assistant role.

She stressed that she’d been “welcomed with open arms,” and praised the club for their commitment to diversity within its coaching roles.

Virgo’s opportunity comes after a long list of coaching accolades.

After acting as Brisbane’s AFLW team manager in 2018, she would go onto coach the Gold Coast Suns’ under 16s girls academy, as well as continue to run her own coaching company.

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Her full list of coaching experience, via oneononefootball.com, includes:

2018:

  • Development Head Coach Yeronga Womens Seniors/QWAFA div 1 Game day coach
  • Director of Coaching Yeronga Junior Girls
  • Senior Assistant Coach QLD Under 18s girls program

2017:

  • Launch of Sam Virgo Coaching. Youth age coaching program involving Clinics and Programs to develop players with a “talent type” development opportunities. Also involves the implementation of school AFL programs.
  • Senior Assistant Coach (midfield) QLD Under 18s girls program
  • Co-Coach Yeronga South Brisbane/Calamvale Under 17 girls
  • Assistant Coach (defence) Darling Downs, QLD State Youth girls championships

2016:

  • Coach Yeronga South Brisbane Under 15 girls
  • NAB AFL All Stars Youth girls program Sept 1-6 Assistant Coach
  • Assistant coach (forwards) QLD Under 18 girls program
  • Assistant coach Northern Rivers, QLD State youth girls championships

2015

  • Assistant Coach Moorooka, Senior Womens
  • Development Coach/Runner, QLD Under 18 girls program
  • Competition Assistant. QLD State youth girls championships
  • AFLQ Summer training program, Assistant Coach, Brisbane South
Knee reco won't slow Virgo down
Virgo coaching the Queensland under 18s girls. (Photo: Brisbane Lions)

In posts on the club’s Facebook and Instagram pages, Coorparoo congratulated Virgo on the accomplishment.

“As we celebrate AFL Women’s Coaching Month, a month where we shine a light on females coaching across all levels of our great game, we are excited to announce that one of our own in Sam Virgo will this week make her Kings senior coaching debut when our QFA Division 1 Senior men tackle Aspley at Coorparoo,” it said.

“Sam is already carving out a path in Queensland football when she becomes the first woman to be senior coach of a boys U17 NAB National Championship squad later this year and now adds to her post playing career resume as she takes the reigns of the Kings for the weekends matchup.

“Virgo has quickly developed a strong relationship with the entire playing group and her football IQ has become an invaluable asset for the coaches & players. Her passion for the game is infectious and we can’t wait to see her leading the charge on Saturday.”

Virgo played 29 games across five seasons for both the Brisbane Lions and Gold Coast Suns, a reliable defender (and occasional forward).

The Kings have enjoyed a strong season so far, undefeated on top of the QFA Division One ladder with 10 wins and a draw.

They’ll be hoping to give Virgo her first win in the top job over last place Aspley on Saturday at Giffin Park Oval as they charge towards finals.

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