Changes have started to take place with the Polish national team. As Hokej.net reports, Łukasz Sokół is out as the head coach of the Men’s U18 team. The Men’s U18 squad took last place and won zero games at the 2022 Division 1 Group B U18 World Championships in Italy. Both sides seemed pretty displeased with each other before and after the tournament.
Sokół is a former national team defenseman and longtime GKS Tychy player. He retired from the PHL in 2016. He started with the national team in 2020, and served as the assistant coach for Poland U17, which competed in the Czechia junior system. 2022 was his first IIHF coaching job. Along with his U18 duties, he also worked with the Szkole Mistrzostwa Sportowego (Sports Championship School). His contact was mutually terminated with the PZHL.
The Polish U18 squad was only promoted back to Divion1 Group B at the 2019 U18s. They did not get a chance to defend their promotion due to the pandemic until this year. The 2022 team was sunk by poor defensive and goaltending play. They will still be in Division 1 Group B next year because Belarus and Russia are suspended from IIHF play. Reportedly the lead candidates for the job are former GKS Tychy head coach Krzysztof Majkowski and former U20 national team coach Piotr Sarnik. If Andrei Gusov does not return to Pohale, he would also be under strong consideration.
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