Newcastle Jets boss Scott Miller will visit EPL clubs Tottenham, Crystal Palace and Bournemouth as part of an extensive European scouting mission during the Hyundai A-League off-season.
Miller departs on Tuesday for a six-week journey in which he will visit clubs in England and then around Scandinavia, with the goal of not only looking for playing talent but also broadening the Jets’ network abroad.
“Whilst I’m in London I’m going to go and visit Alan Pardew at Crystal Palace and then go to the FA Cup final. I’m going to Bournemouth to see Eddie Howe and Tottenham as well,” Miller told www.a-league.com.au.
“I’ll then be going to meet Stale Solbakken at Copenhagen for six days, then onto Brondby as well.
“It’s more a watch-and-learn approach than identifying players. It’s about understanding different principles, different philosophies and understanding team identity and culture.
“Looking at team dynamic and different coaching styles…and more importantly trusting people and building relationships whilst I’m over there so we can utilise their network.
“We don’t have a massive scouting network in Australia whereas these big clubs do. They have loads of chief scouts throughout the world and I want to build a relationship with them so we can utilise their services.”
Miller sees Scandinavia as a great untapped area for A-League clubs to explore to discover talented players.
During his time at English club Fulham, Miller worked with a number of players from that region and was left suitably impressed, while Dane Morten Nordstrand was a star in the second half of last season with the Jets.
“The standard of Scandinavia and their footballing education is very good. What you have there is the second or third tier rating in the worldwide football scheme,” the Jets boss said.
“But you have clubs there playing in the Champions League and Europa League year in, year out. The exposure is actually very good, the quality is higher than Australia based on how early they start playing and educating their young footballers.
“And more importantly their wages tend to correlate greater [to Australia] more than an England or a Spain. It’s a real advantage for us.
“I’m looking for a younger dynamic player for the Jets and with that maybe loans out of Scandinavia could be a benefit. Our experience here [at the Jets] was good and at Fulham it was even better…they are very driven and got a great work ethic.”
Miller revealed the club was close to signing a promising midfielder, with a deal likely to happen “in the next three or four days”.
“He’s very versatile and he’s not a past player, he’s the right age in terms of his career and I feel he will be a great addition,” he said.
“We’ve still got about seven spots to fill, including three under-20 players and a couple of [visa player] positions open so the scope is there to add some real quality.”
The Jets wrapped up their 2015/16 campaign with a final training session last Monday and will return for pre-season on June 27.