Arnold: I’m flattered, but I won’t coach Socceroos at World Cup


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    Graham Arnold has ruled himself out of contention to coach the Socceroos at the World Cup.

    The Sydney FC boss said he was “honoured and flattered” to have been informed just days ago by Football Federation Australia (FFA) that he was among a shortlist of candidates for the vacant job.

    But on Monday night the 54-year-old said he was no longer in the running to replace Ange Postecoglou, who quit a week after ensuring Australia would qualify for a fourth successive World Cup.

    “I am committed to Sydney FC and 100 per cent focused on seeing out this season and winning two more trophies for this great club. I can confirm I will not be coaching the Socceroos in Russia,” Arnold said in a Sydney FC statement.

    Arnold will remain in charge of the Sky Blues at least until the end of the A-League season but could yet take charge of Australia’s national team on a full-time basis after Russia 2018.

    “Graham will be our head coach here at Sydney FC until at least the end of this season. Beyond that, we look forward to continuing our discussions about our long-term plans together,” Sydney chairman Scott Barlow said in a club statement.

    “Everyone at the club is focused on winning back-to-back A-League titles and embarking on our most successful Asian Champions League campaign ever.”

    FFA appear to favour a big-name foreign coach for a short-term stint leading up to and including the World Cup.

    A delegation led by chief executive David Gallop is expected to interview the leading prospects in Europe this week amid heavy conjecture surrounding Roberto Mancini, Juergen Klinsmann, Slaven Bilic, Louis van Gaal, Bert van Marwijk and Marcelo Bielsa.

    Van Marwijk confirmed he’s on an FFA short list.

    “We are going to talk and see if we can make it work,” he told Fox Sports in the Netherlands.

    Asked if it was “really possible” that he could coach Australia, Van Marwijk replied: “Yes”.

    The Dutchman took the Netherlands to the final of the 2010 World Cup and oversaw Saudi Arabia’s qualification for the 2018 tournament before departing after a dispute with the country’s soccer federation.

    Gallop said earlier this month that a Socceroos coach would be installed by the middle of February.

    © AAP 2018

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    The Crowd Says (9)

    • Columnist

      January 23rd 2018 @ 10:04am
      David Lord said | January 23rd 2018 @ 10:04am | ! Report

      Congratulations Arnie for showing the one asset that doesn’t surface enough these days – loyalty to Sydney FC.

      No wonder they are the team to beat in the A-League, you are calling the shots, and the team keeps responding.

      There’s no doubt Arnie you would do a better job in Moscow than any of the boom overseas contenders.

      But when the time is right you will take over the Socceroos, gualify them for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, and reach the play-offs.

      That’s when your loyalty will be the ultimate pay off.

      • January 23rd 2018 @ 10:15am
        Nemesis said | January 23rd 2018 @ 10:15am | ! Report

        “There’s no doubt Arnie you would do a better job in Moscow than any of the boom overseas contenders.”

        Really? Based on what evidence do you say this?

        Arnie has failed spectacularly at club level, & national level, when coaching against foreign opponents: Asia Cup 20107, Olyroos, ACL, brief stint for a club in Japan.

        I now think it’s highly likely Arnold will get the job after the World Cup 2018, let’s hope he can be as successful with the National Team as he is in a 10 team domestic competition, where his team has only ever had to play 6 opponents outside his home state.

        • January 23rd 2018 @ 4:52pm
          Kangajets said | January 23rd 2018 @ 4:52pm | ! Report

          Arnold didn’t show loyalty to the mariners when bigger money offers come .

          It’s obvious he’s got the job post World Cup.

    • January 23rd 2018 @ 10:30am
      Fadida said | January 23rd 2018 @ 10:30am | ! Report

      I’d rather Phil Stubbins over Bilic or Klinsmann

      • January 23rd 2018 @ 4:53pm
        Kangajets said | January 23rd 2018 @ 4:53pm | ! Report

        Stubbins before Klinsmann. Mmmm

    • January 23rd 2018 @ 12:25pm
      Kris said | January 23rd 2018 @ 12:25pm | ! Report

      A big name foreign manager is probably not necessary (or even a good choice). In club football a big name can help with getting transfers done, can impose some discipline on the divas in the dressing room, can stare down journos and all sorts of other stuff.

      National team bosses can’t do much of that.

      You’d like to think that the national team is suitably motivated and united (an not much anyone can do about it in a couple of training camps if they are not). Can’t really work on fitness. Obviously can’t make transfers. Won’t have time to make player assessments and change the squad much.

      So basically all you are paying for is some pre-game tactics and sideline coaching. Probably better off hiring a good assistant manager for such a short-term one-off gig. Someone with a reputation for coaching more than managing – and a lot of these bigname guys gave up coaching 20 years ago and haven’t set foot on a training ground since.

    • Roar Guru

      January 23rd 2018 @ 1:39pm
      Griffo said | January 23rd 2018 @ 1:39pm | ! Report

      Ralf Rangnick has dropped off the media radar – didn’t want it, or FFA decided he’s not the man short term?

      Probably the former I believe. Pity, he sounded like what we needed without the huge cost to FFA.

      Arnold may also be playing it smart – let a short term foreign coach take the team through the World Cup then leave, while Arnold gets some ACL experience, then jump over to the Roos for Asian Cup title defence.

      Ideally if the FFA can get the right coach now, they won’t have to disrupt Asian Cup prep…

    • January 23rd 2018 @ 7:28pm
      Simoc said | January 23rd 2018 @ 7:28pm | ! Report

      Well you can bet the os coach will have Australia playing a thoroughly defensive style and not without good reason. If they win a game the guy can be a hero but big score blowouts when losing don’t go down well.

      • January 23rd 2018 @ 9:25pm
        Kangajets said | January 23rd 2018 @ 9:25pm | ! Report

        Interesting observation simoc

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