Selection of the newly proposed Parramatta FC logo for the 2019 season.
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After 50 years, Parramatta FC (Formerly known as Parramatta Melita Eagles Soccer Club) were sadly forced to partner with a well established organisation in the Police Citizens Youth Clubs (PCYC) of New South Wales in 2006, due to financial problems, or the then most successful football club in New South Wales & former National Soccer League powerhouse may not have survived.
Being relegated to NSW NPL2 for the 2007 season due to their financial issues, PCYC Parramatta Eagles FC as they were newly known, remained a force having qualified for the finals series in all four seasons under PCYC, and unluckily suffering defeats in the 2008 and 2009 Grand Finals. Although the Eagles missed out on the 2010 Grand Final, they would qualify for promotion to NSW NPL1 for the 2011 season after they became the NSW NPL2 Minor Premiers.
In 2011, a new partnership was formed between Parramatta Melita Eagles Sports Club (PMESC) and Granville and Districts Soccer Football Association (GDSFA), in which the club became known as Parramatta FC, after PCYC would no longer be able to continue running the club’s football operations.
Parramatta were lucky to avoid the drop in the top flight when the club finished last in 2011, however, weren’t so lucky in 2012, finishing in the same position. In 2013, the Eagles would return to NSW NPL2, finishing just outside finals contention, but make would amends in 2014, finishing as Minor Premiers and nine points clear at the top of the table. Sadly, Parramatta would lose their Grand Final, but would finally return to the NSW NPL1 competition for the 2015 season.
Surviving relegation on the final day in 2015, and then missing out on the finals series after being just outside the top five for much of the 2016 season, 2017 was the season the club hoped to finally qualify for NPL1 finals football for the first time since the 2002/2003 season. Sadly, what was to come would be a first in the club’s 60 year history, and a shock to every supporters’ system. Already struggling at the bottom of the table, a “Mass Exodus” of senior players would depart during the mid season transfer window, leaving barely an onfield team left from their three senior squads. Panic buying was the only choice, with almost every team member replaced during the season as well as all the senior coaches after a new head coach was appointed. Although performances had improved with younger & less experienced players, the team could not avoid finishing bottom of the table. Again relegation to NSW NPL2 was a reality.
Under a new board led by businessman, local community leader and GDSFA treasurer, Steve Elriche, a resurgence was hopeful to bring back the glory days to the club which he supported as a kid. However, 2018 was going to be no easy task to run 15 clubs (From Under 9’s to 1st Grade) from scratch. Losing their 5 women’s teams due to Football NSW restructuring the Women’s NPL competition at the end of 2017, was another setback, after two of the club’s womens teams were grand finalists, in which one took out the Minor Premiership and then later became State Champions.
The 2018 season started very promisingly for our three senior teams, going without defeat in Round 1, however, as the season wore on, the lack of depth in the three squads began to reveal issues due to the events which occurred in 2017. The mid season transfer window saw all three grades, in particular 1st Grade, look to strengthen their squads, but the player point system which clubs were to abide by proved a massive obstacle for our club, making it very difficult to gain an edge on other NSW NPL2 clubs. Sadly, missed opportunities in matches throughout the season costed Parramatta dearly, finishing last on the Club Championship table for the second season in a row, and imagining the unthinkable, of a once great club competing in the NSW NPL3 competition for the 2019 season.
THE ISSUES AND PROPOSAL…..
With Parramatta FC facing back-to-back relegations in 2017 and 2018, and a severe drop in spectator attendances over the past six years, very possibly due to the introduction of the Western Sydney Wanderers Football Club to Australia’s A-League competition, it is believed that a new approach is required.
In saying this, while the GDSFA need to be thanked for keeping this club afloat, after PCYC were no longer able to, I believe Parramatta FC should return to the club’s roots completely, and by this I mean a change in identity or image, in particular with the club’s logo. While the club’s gear remains red and white, as the club’s original colours dating back to it’s establishment in 1956, I firmly believe that while it is fair that the current football operator’s (GDSFA) colours resonate on the current club logo, it should also include the iconic red and white colours of the founding club members’ (Maltese) heritage, whom had put their blood, sweat, and tears for the first 50 years to make this great club the successful one that it once was.
I have only missed two of Parramatta FC’s home and away competition matches in the past 4 years (Due to family commitments) since returning to support my childhood club, and the feedback I have received since PCYC took over the football operations from the Maltese, has proved that interest has dwindled away from the club over the past 11 years, but more rapidly in the past 6 years, because it is a known fact that:
- The public don’t believe the club is what it used to be in its successful past;
- The A-League competition has posed a major obstacle to the success of the NSW State League competition, in particular the recently formed Western Sydney Wanderers FC who seem to have attracted many supporters away from the famous NSW Clubs including Parramatta FC;
- The club’s older supporters are sadly passing away while others can no longer drive in the dark when night matches are organised;
- The younger generation who would attend the club’s matches as kids now have families of their own, but will take their kids to their local football clubs, ignoring their childhood club.
By proposing an amended logo of the club’s current logo, I believe this may be the first step in proving to the public that the club is making an effort to return back to its original roots, and hopefully entice the public to give the Eagles another chance, whether it be returning to support the club, returning to play for the club, or even enticing new supporters and players to the club, which is vital for the longevity of this club.
In this proposed amended logo, I intend on:
- Keeping the majority of the original logo as is since the club is operated by the GDSFA;
- Adding the iconic red and white stripes behind the Eagle and within the shield;
- Adding the Establishment year “EST. 1956” along the outer border (Toward the bottom) of the club logo;
- Eliminating the oval shape below the football and shield, which included the word “EAGLES”, and replacing it with a large prominent “EAGLES” text in white with a black border, spanning the width of the logo.
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