With the 2016/17 season only two months away, Central Coast Mariners are looking for a new coach to make an immediate impact. Here are a few up to the challenge....
Mariners coach Tony Walmsley was sacked after one of the worst seasons recorded by an A-League side marred by 20 losses and just three wins, despite marquee signing Luis Garcia.
A recent shock defeat to National Premier League side Green Gully in the FFA Cup sealed Walmsley's fate and underlined the need for change at Gosford.
His Green Gully side sent the Mariners crashing out of the FFA Cup and ultimately led to Walmsley’s exit from the Central Coast - but is Papas the man to replace him?
At the age of 36, Arthur Papas is the current coach of National Premier League side Green Gully and one of the rising stars in Australian coaching. The youngest-ever winner of the Victorian National Premier League’s coach of the year award could bring a refreshing revitalisation for the Mariners. After stints with Australian U17s and Newcastle Jets, it could be time for Papas to step up to running his own A-League side at last.
Mike Mulvey was appointed head coach of Malaysian Super League side Terengganu FA just eight months ago - but told to "take a rest" by the club just last month, potentially making him available for the Gosford team.
But there is no denying his credentials for the job. Just three seasons ago Mulvey managed Brisbane Roar as they dominated the A-League in 2013/14, winning the Premiership by an impressive 10 points and going on to clinch the Championship. The wily Englishman would bring an A-League winning mentality that the Mariners lacked last season, but his lack of recruiting options this season may cool his interest.
The Central Coast legend would be very popular appointment among the Mariners’ faithful. With 271 appearances for the club since its establishment in 2005, the current Mariners assistant coach has been with the team through the good times like 2012/13 Championship as well as the bad times… like last season’s campaign.
Hutchinson will be a key part of the caretaker team running the Mariners in pre-season until a suitable appointment and ultimately, his lack of managerial experience could cost him the appointment this time round.
An A-League veteran, the former Sydney FC, and Adelaide United player is still early in his managerial career that began in 2011 with National Premier League NSW side Rockdale City Suns before joining his former team Sydney United.
He has enjoyed success in the National Premier League, winning the Premiership in 2013 as well as being awarded the NSW Coach of the Year in the same year. Much like Papas, the appointment of Rudan could offer a fresh start for the Mariners and with highly valued A-League playing experience, Rudan could very well make the managerial step up to the A-League. However, prospective new boss Mike Charlesworth took offence at comments Rudan made as an analyst on Fox Sports - which he may still hold against him.
The New Zealander is well respected as an A-League coach following his six-year stint with Wellington Phoenix, while also boasting national team experience as the coach of a New Zealand side that qualified for the World Cup for only the second time in its history - and went unbeaten at South Africa 2010.
While Herbert did not enjoy overwhelming success in the A-League during his time with Wellington, his appointment could bring some much-needed stability to the Mariners. Herbert would undoubtedly be up for the challenge and be itching to further prove himself as a top-level A-League coach after brief stints with Papua New Guinea and the Maldives national teams.
An impressive resume of teams including the Socceroos, Brisbane Roar, and Sydney FC, Frank Farina offers A-League and national team experience that would be highly valued by the Mariners.
Much like Mulvey, he has only held his current job as the head coach of the Fijian national team for eight months, potentially providing a roadblock if Central Coast were to pursue him. He is currently believed to be in Brazil with the Fiji side at the Olympics. However, if he were appointed he would add an aura of credibility that the Gosford side has lacked in its last few seasons, albeit despite a potentially fractious relationship with fans.
Lou Acevski led his former club Hume City FC to last season's FFA Cup semi-finals as the heroic run resulted in Hume City becoming the last state-level team left in the tournament before bowing out to Melbourne Victory.
Acevski only recently left Hume City last month and after spending eight years with the team, three as a player and five as a coach he built the club into a formidable force in the Victorian NPL. He has recently stated his desire to spend time with his wife and three children was a major contribution to his resignation. However, an A-League level managerial job could be hard to turn down, and he was named in the Top Five managers of the last 12 months in the latest issue of FourFourTwo magazine.
The Scots-born coaching guru is an outside option for the Mariners' job, but with a wealth of both playing and managerial experience in both Australia and overseas he would unquestionably be a valuable asset to the Mariners.
He is best known for his role as the head coach of the Matildas, where he led the team to the quarter-finals of both the 2007 and 2011 World Cup. He has since taken up roles in the United States and Canadian women’s teams and more recently the newly formed Orlando Pride. While only being in charge for nine months Sermanni could make the switch back to Australia, a nation where he enjoyed great success and make the switch to prove himself in the A-League.