FOOTBALL Federation Australia Chief Executive Officer David Gallop, who returned from Europe overnight, has reiterated the governing body's preference for an Aussie to coach the Socceroos.
Gallop confirmed that three A-League clubs were contacted, suggesting the reigning champs, Central Coast Mariners, have indeed been spoken to about title-winning coach Graham Arnold.
As reported, the clubs of Tony Popovic (Western Sydney Wanderers) and Ange Postecoglou (Melbourne Victory) have been approached.
Gallop made it clear that putting together a competitive national team should not be put-off as a long-term goal.
He made this statement on the FFA website:
“Since my return from Europe I’ve met with the Chairman and we have re-affirmed our commitment to FFA’s long term strategy that the next Socceroos coach would ideally be an Australian,” said Football Federation Australia Chief Executive Officer David Gallop.
“It should not come as a surprise that we have been considering possible scenarios and options since the World Cup qualification period earlier this year. That is appropriate contingency planning.
"We would like to appoint the coach before the next FIFA window in November to give him the opportunity to work with the players ahead of the World Cup, the Asian Cup and beyond.
"As I have already said, the regeneration of the team is critical but producing a competitive outfit is not something that should only be a long term goal.
"We want the Socceroos to strive for world class standards and to always punch above our weight on the global stage.
"FFA has also started a review of the Socceroos and the new coach will quite rightly have input into that review as it covers the existing structures in the National Team Unit, its integration into the FFA’s overall strategy, scouting systems, sports science, training camp and game planning and all other issues relating to the flagship team in our sport. Our new Head of National Performance, Luke Casserly will lead that review.
“We have made contact with the Hyundai A-League clubs of the three candidates mentioned and while the speculation is understandable it would not be appropriate to make further comment at this stage.”