Sunday, 17 December, 2017

Postecoglou stands down as Socceroos coach

Ange Postecoglou steps down as Australia boss ahead of World Cup Postecoglou leaves Australia post
Lucia Summers | 22 November, 2017, 11:29

Ange Postecoglou has stepped down as the coach of Australia after leading the country to qualification for the 2018 World Cup in Russian Federation.

"As I've said many times, it's been the biggest privilege of my life and it's probably not the ending I'd envisaged when we started but at the same time knowing that it's the right time for me and the right decision".

Tim Cahill hugs Australia coach Ange Postecoglou as he is substituted from the field. A week after that, he made the announcement Wednesday that he wouldn't be taking the Australian team to next year's World Cup in Russian Federation despite guiding them through a grueling, 22-game qualifying campaign that concluded with back-to-back, winner-takes-all playoff series.

"It's something I've mulled over for a while... overall it's just an instinct, it's just the right time for me, it's just the right time for the team".

"As for the process going forward, we won't be rushed", said Gallop, sitting alongside Postecoglou. The Socceroos will not play again until March next year at the earliest so we have time to conduct a thorough process.

Under his reign, the Socceroos achieved the team's greatest accomplishment in winning the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Asian Cup at home in 2015. "That's why I love coaching Australian players".

Mr Postecoglou said he may return to club football, saying he didn't "want to be unemployed for too long". He said he would be looking for a new post in club football, probably overseas. "He has done an outstanding job and has always had our total support", Lowy said.

Postecoglou refused to comment on the reports at the time, and appeared to be increasingly aggravated by the continued focus on his position while the team was preparing for crucial matches in Honduras and in Sydney.

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"All of that is important, but it doesn't necessarily guarantee that we'll be able to appoint an Australian".

"We hope desperately that is not the reason you shoved the job as national coach but you leave your fellow Australians little option".

But with a four-month gap before the next global window in March, FFA has time on its side to sift through the applications - something Gallop said was paramount. "But all we can see is a man looking for a cool room".

Postecoglou took the helm of the national team four years ago after very successful stints in the A-League with Brisbane Roar and Melbourne Victory.

The win capped a gruelling, 22-match, 29-month qualifying campaign that criss-crossed Asia, the Middle East and Central America.

But at a press conference on Wednesday, Postecoglou confirmed one of football's worst kept secrets - that he wouldn't be with the Socceroos at their fourth consecutive World Cup.

He was given a 5-year contract by the FFA after the sacking of German Holger Osieck, becoming the Socceroos' first full-time Australian coach in 9 years.

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