A Nanaimo soccer coach is now in charge of Vancouver Island’s highest-calibre soccer side.
Pacific FC announced Friday, Jan. 21, that James Merriman has been promoted as head coach of the Canadian Premier League club.
The 36-year-old, who hails from Cedar, has been an assistant coach with the club since its inaugural 2019 season and was part of the staff that led Pacific FC to a CPL championship in 2021.
“It’s obviously very special to be able to live my dream of being a head coach for a professional team, especially on Vancouver Island,” Merriman said in a club press release. “I’m very grateful for the opportunity.”
Merriman has previously been an assistant coach at Simon Fraser University and Vancouver Island University. He said in the release that he’s excited to build off the team’s championship season and the foundation it has built.
“James has been with this organization since Day 1 and has been instrumental in building the core that brought us a championship,” said Rob Friend, Pacific FC CEO, in the release. “Off the field what he brings to the community as an Islander is so important to what we’re doing as an organization to build a strong team for the Island as a whole.”
Merriman’s predecessor Pa-Modou Kah left Pacific FC after two seasons to join North Texas SC of Major League Soccer.
“I’m very proud of what we accomplished this season with the championship,” said Kah in the release. “We went through a lot as a team so I want to thank the players, the staff and the ownership. In my two years here we accomplished a lot so I will always remember my time here well.”
Pacific FC’s home pitch is Langford’s Starlight Stadium. For more about the team, visit http://pacificfc.ca.