By Jonty Ralphsmith
In 2021, Frankston midfielder Nathan Scagliarini was voted into the leadership group for a second time.
This time, he is far better positioned to accept the responsibility than the exciting but raw prospect in a young 2018 squad.
As defender Max Williams recalls: “he was touted as a bit of a leader because he did really well and was really fit and strong.”
Scagliarini remembers thinking that the title ‘looks good’ but understands in hindsight that having that view on leadership showed that he did not understand the true weight of it.
Getting the 2018 season under his belt, missing the 2019 season with an injury, and preparing himself for a big 2020 which he used to play NTFL mean he is now better equipped to tackle the role.
“I feel like I’ve matured as a person, and because I’ve been at the club for four years and invested in the club, I want it to spread it to others and we can only build the club if we’re all working together,” Scagliarini said.
“If I can lead by example and help someone get the most out of themselves with the opportunity they’ve got to represent the Frankston Football Club then that’s what I’ll do.”
“You’re not in the leadership group to look good, you’re there to drive the standards and drive the team forward.”
He sees his professionalism as his major asset as a leader, which teammates, including leadership group member Nathan Freeman, testify to, but dispute the 22-year-old’s claim that he isn’t the most vocal leader.
“You won’t find a more professional bloke than Scags,” Freeman said.
“He’s one of those guys you’d love at any footy club that personifies hard work, getting the boys together, and a really good culture.
“[He is also] a really direct leader that’s not afraid to give some points of feedback but at the same time he’ll put an arm around a bloke, and everyone loves him.”
Scagliarini also spoke about his desire to change the perception of Frankston.
Coming off a one-win season in 2019, he understands the “outside noise” surrounding the club and is determined to propel it to be more ‘powerful and professional’ – something that has not gone unnoticed by skipper Josh Newman.
“‘Scags’ has changed his tune with the way he’s approaching the year this year and he’s really passionate and striving to get the best out of the group and he’s really in it for the long haul which is great to see.
“He’s just an awesome leader with everything he does.”