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'Affected our family deeply': Tragic reason Marko Rudan has parted ways with Western Sydney Wanderers

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16th May, 2024
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Western Sydney Wanderers coach Marko Rudan will depart the club despite being under a long term contract, citing personal reasons.

The Wanderers confirmed Thursday that Rudan was leaving effective immediately by mutual consent.

“I would like to thank Chairman Mr Paul Lederer, CEO Scott Hudson and the Board for giving me the opportunity to lead this great club. Unfortunately, due to personal circumstances, I need to end my association with the club,” said Rudan in a statement.

“The club is in a healthy position, although we fell short of playing in the Finals this season, I am proud of all the hard work by the players, support staff and executive of the club. 

Mark Rudan

Western Sydney Wanderers coach Marko Rudan. (Photo by Steve Christo/Corbis via Getty Images)

“A special mention should go to the NPL space with both our senior and Under 20’s currently in first place. The young players have stepped up this season and the future is looking extremely exciting.

“I will be spending my time in the near future being close to my family as we are going through a difficult time as my mother’s brain cancer has come back. 

“I wish to bring awareness to the Brain Cancer Foundation. This illness has affected our family deeply.

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“Thank you to all the players, staff, executive and fans of Western Sydney Wanderers.”

Wanderers CEO Scott Hudson thanked Rudan, who had joined the club in January 2022 and was about to start a fresh three-year deal.

“Marko has demonstrated complete dedication to the role in his time here, culminating in him leading us to a Finals campaign last season after many years in the wilderness,” said Hudson.

“We thank Marko for his efforts and wish him, and his family, all the best for the future.”

Western Sydney chairman Paul Lederer says he won’t rush to find an immediate replacement. 

Ex-Melbourne City boss Patrick Kisnorbo and former Central Coast Mariners manager Nick Montgomery are both free agents, while Melbourne Victory coach Tony Popovic, who was the Wanderers’ inaugural coach, is yet to agree to a new contract. But Lederer insists he has yet to draw up a list of potential candidates. 

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“There’s no rush and we will go through a proper process as we always do,” Lederer told AAP. “At this stage we don’t have one (an ideal candidate) but we are going to have a good look.

“We have a blank canvas, we’ll go through a proper process and then we’ll work out what’s going on.” 

Rudan should take some credit for resurrecting the Wanderers in his first full season in charge of the club. He took Western Sydney back to the finals for the first time in several years before a narrow loss to rivals Sydney FC. 

But his second campaign, which began with hopes of the club vying for the premiers’ plate, quickly unravelled. 

The Wanderers’ form nosedived in the back end of the year with Rudan failing to front his post-match press conference after suffering a 7-0 thrashing from Melbourne City at AAMI Park in March.

Lawrence Thomas’s absence due to international duty and injuries to star striker Brandon Borrello also hampered the Wanderers campaign. 

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There were rumours of player unrest and last month Rudan apologised after he singled out youngster Marcus Younis for blame following the Wanderers’ derby loss to Sydney FC.

In February, Rudan was banned for two games, with another suspended, for his verbal attack on referee Adam Kersey following a narrow loss to Macarthur.

with AAP

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