Tasman United head coach Jess Ibrom has taken the reins from Andy Hedge for the 2019-2020 season. Photo: Jonty Dine.

Jess’ journey from Chelsea to Tasman


Having worked with one of the biggest clubs in football, Jess Ibrom will lend his talents to Tasman United this season as he looks to establish the franchise as a national powerhouse.

The new head coach and Nelson Bays director of football has a wealth of experience in a career that has spanned the globe.

“Football has taken me to a number of different countries around the world,” he says.

Jess has a notorious eye for talent having had extensive involvement in developing the Phoenix Academy and coaching at the Asia Pacific Football Academy.

He has coached at international level with the Cook Islands, but Jess says the biggest highlight on his enviable resume was working with English Premier League giants Chelsea FC.

“Being exposed to a top-level European club was just a fantastic experience.”

Jess was tasked with scouring the world for the best players he could find.

After travelling Asia and South America, Jess relocated to New Zealand and will now look to assemble the best squad possible for the ISPS Handa Premiership.

“I have followed the club for a number of years and was very enthused to apply.”

After a disappointing campaign in 2018-19, Jess is confident he can turn things around this season.

He says he has brought on plenty of “passionate local football people” with a great mix of knowledge and experience.

“There is a strong local influence with management and plenty of players with local connections that I’m very keen to bring to the club.”

Jess’ time overseas has shaped his coaching philosophy and he says he is a big believer in creating an environment for players to develop and prosper.

“I want people to come to the games and be enthused about Tasman United, so it won’t be a brand that will be sit back and let the game happen. We will be playing front foot football.”

He says the next few months will be focused on making the team as competitive as possible.

“I want to be successful and firmly believe we can.”

Jess also plans to bring the team and the community closer.

“There is an identity to the club, fan engagement is a key factor.”

Jess has settled into the Washington Valley with his wife and says they are loving the change of scenery from the city.

“We are really enjoying Nelson and slowly establishing ourselves,”

He says the city has a reputation for producing quality footballers and he hopes to carry on this legacy.