Ex-Hartlepool star making a name for himself Down Under

DOWN UNDER ... Paul Arnison in action for Pools. Below, with his family.
DOWN UNDER ... Paul Arnison in action for Pools. Below, with his family.

AN ex-Pools star is making a name for himself down under after landing his first job in coaching.

Paul Arnison swapped Granville Avenue for the Gold Coast back in 2012, moving to Australia with wife Amanda, 35, and sons Harry, 12 and eight-year-old Alfie.

Paul Arnison and his family.

Paul Arnison and his family.

Having left his hometown club in 2003 with 90 appearances under his belt, ex-Martyrs pupil Paul went on to turn out for Carlisle United, Bradford City and Darlington before playing in the Northern League with Celtic Nation.

But Paul, who started his career as a trainee with Newcastle United, has found a new lease of life since emigrating and after turning out for the Sunshine Fire team last year he has now been appointed as the club’s coach.

He is now setting his sights on passing on some of his wealth of experience to the Fire squad, and has high hopes that he will be a success.

Paul said: “I’m really enjoying it over here, and I’m delighted to get the chance to be a coach now.

“I’ve always had ambitions to get into coaching, I took the badges towards the end of my playing days back home and it’s something I’m keen on doing.”

Paul has proved to be a big hit with the Sunshine Fire fans, and has found himself in the spotlight with his image being plastered over the back of a bus in an advertising campaign as well as having a lifesize cardboard cut out of him placed in a busy shopping centre.

He added: “It’s all a bit bizarre, but the Aussies love their football and the club are really trying to tap into the community.

“We have the A league over here which is the Aussie version of the Premiership, and we are in the tier below that.

“The level we are at is probably equivalent to League Two back in England.

“I got a bit of stick when I appeared on the back of the bus, Amanda actually got stuck behind the bus in a traffic jam so she was fuming that she couldn’t get away from me!”

Off the pitch, the Arnisons have settled in well and are currently having a new home built so they can finally lay down some roots.

“We have rented places over here since we emigrated, so it will be nice to finally have our own home,” added Paul.

“It seems like we have lived out of suitcases and boxes for the past couple of years, but we love it here and we’re really enjoying it.

“Amanda has a job as a community nurse, Harry and Alfie love their school and are both doing well with their football and schoolwork.

“Obviously we miss Hartlepool and our friends and family, but we keep up to date with everything on Facebook and messages so it’s not too bad.

“We’ve also got Sky Sports, so me and the kids are quite happy watching all of the football even if we do have to get up in the middle of the night sometimes to see the matches.

“It was obviously a big move to decide to pack everything up and move to the other side of the world, but we’re all loving it and we don’t have any regrets.”