Lennon and the Premiership club were at war for a week after claims of an incident that led to the veteran boss being immediately suspended.

The club later backtracked and issued a glowing statement praising Lennon's achievements and clearing him of any wrongdoing – but admitting he and the club had decided to part ways.

But after Sydney-Melbourne City match on Sunday, Maclaren said Lennon WAS sacked – and he wasn't going to hang around for a new boss to come in.

Maclaren had struggled for form at Hibs this season after ripping it up in the Scottish Premiership the season before.

He finally broke his Socceroos duck during the Asian Cup and found the back of the net for the first time in the 3-0 win over Palestine, but saw plenty more chances go begging.

As soon as he returned from UAE, the wheels were set in motion for his move back to the A-League where he broke Australian goalscoring records while with Brisbane Roar.

His parent club Darmstadt – who had loaned him out to Hibs – were persuaded to end his loan to Scotland and then release him to join Melbourne City in a nail biting deal that pushed the deadline to the limit.

He leaves behind fellow Socceroos Mark Milligan and Martin Boyle at Hibernian.

“It’s just about opportunity — you don’t get too many opportunities to come to this sort of club and for me it was a matter of the circumstances I was in, with Neil Lennon getting sacked,” Maclaren told Fox Sports.

“For me it was the right time. Coming back to the A-League, a place I love — it’s been 11 years since I’ve been in Melbourne, sometimes family is important."

He added: “There were a few discussions, but at the end of the day Melbourne City is a club that I have the same ambitions.

“For me it was about being happy and feeling Melbourne City was the best place for me.”