Ange Postecoglou steps down as Australia boss ahead of World Cup
23 November, 2017, 02:17 | Author: Pamela Mathis
An emotional Ange Postecoglou said on Wednesday that he will not take Australia to the World Cup next year after a lengthy qualification campaign, leaving the team just months to find a new coach for Russian Federation.
But it was paying tribute to his family that brought the 52-year-old close to tears.
The former Socceroos coach was set to quit after the Thailand World Cup qualifier in Melbourne in September had the Socceroos advanced from their group automatically.
"After a great deal of thought and soul-searching, I've decided that the journey for me ends as Socceroos coach", declared the 2015 AFC Asian Cup victor.
"This has been a very tough decision for me", Postecoglou - who took charge of the Socceroos in 2013 - said.
Football Federation Australia chief David Gallop said he was confused as to why Postecoglou had chose to cut short his reign before the end of his five-year contract next July.
The FFA will now begin the search for a new coach.
"It's important that we get the right person to fill the big shoes", Gallop said.
The Socceroos, who beat Syria and then Honduras in two-legged playoffs to seal their World Cup spot, do not play again until March.
Gallop admitted he was "disappointed and still a bit puzzled" over Postecoglou's decision.
Arnold worked under the Socceroos' Dutch coaches Guus Hiddink and Pim Verbeek, and managed the team during the 2007 Asian Cup.
Thank you Ange for the belief and opportunity you gave me to represent my country To play in a World Cup and to win the Asian cup on home soil is something I will cherish and never forget!
"I want to coach overseas".
Postecoglou said he was keen to get back to club football and "working day-to-day".
"I have loved this job".
"But it doesn't necessarily guarantee that we will be able to find 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".
The Australian Broadcasting Corporation's Dan Colasimone described Postecoglou's resignation as "weird" and said it had left a "bitter aftertaste".
Postecoglou called time on four years at the helm via a press conference at the SCG.
Under Postecoglou, the Socceroos won 22 matches out of 49, drew 12, and lost 15.
Australia beat Honduras 3-0 in Sydney last Wednesday to book their place at the 32-team World Cup finals in Russian Federation next year thanks to a second-half hatrick (well, two goals plus an own goal off a deflected free kick) from captain Mile Jedinak.
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