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Sport Former EPL star linked to Matildas head coach role

11:30  11 august  2020
11:30  11 august  2020 Source:   wwos.nine.com.au

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11 External links . History. Matildas before a game against Italy in 2009. As Ernie Merrick backed out on his intentions to coach the team, Adrian Santrac only took over as manager in November, and Australia played no games in 2001.

Only hours before he was sacked, former Matilda 's coach Alen Stajcic allegedly described the team environment as "dysfunctional" and "cancerous" "FFA CEO met with Alen Stajcic on 18 January, at which meeting the Head Coach stated that the Matildas environment was 'dysfunctional' and

Former EPL star Phil Neville has been linked to the vacant Matildas head coach role.

According to a report from the Daily Mail in the UK, Neville is among the top candidates for Football Federation Australia to target after the departure of Ante Milicic.

Milicic was already contracted to take up a role with Macarthur Football Club in their inaugural season in the A-League, so his tenure as Matildas manager following long-time coach Alen Stajcic's surprise sacking last year was always temporary.

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Former Matildas ' head coach Alen Stajcic had vowed to clear his name of any wrongdoing. (AAP: Joel Carrett). Football Federation Australia (FFA) director Heather Reid has apologised to the former Matildas coach Alen Stajcic for comments she made about him when he was sacked in January.

The former Brisbane Roar head coach was considered a chance of landing the Matildas position after Alen Stajcic's sacking in January 2019. Instead she worked as an assistant to Milicic at last year's World Cup and beyond while she quit her Roar role to lead the academy program for Queensland

Phil Neville wearing a suit and tie: Phil Neville has had a solid coaching career after hanging up his boots © Getty Phil Neville has had a solid coaching career after hanging up his boots

The FFA are reportedly now looking for a more long-term solution and have been aiming high with their next appointment, with USA's two-time Women's World Cup-winning coach Jill Ellis and Aussie Arsenal women's team coach Joe Montemurro alongside Neville also on the shortlist.

Neville is currently the coach of the England women's team but the England FA will not be extending his contract. Since taking the job in 2018 he helped lead the Lionesses to a fourth-place finish after a semi-final loss to eventual champions USA at the 2019 Women's World Cup.

It was their second-best result at the event, however Neville's position has been under pressure since then after seven losses from 11 matches.

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In recent times when an A- League club needed a new head coach two phone calls were placed. One was to Ange Postecoglou, the other was to FFA HQ. In the microcosm that is Australian football, with few professional head coach roles going around, every time one pops up the same names emerge.

View Errors leading to goal played by Premier League players for 2018/19 and previous seasons, on the official website of the Premier League . ClubsExternal Link .

David Beckham, Phil Neville looking at a cell phone: Manchester United's Paul Scholes, David Beckham and Phil Neville celebrate winning the Barclaycard Premiership trophy in 2003 © Getty Manchester United's Paul Scholes, David Beckham and Phil Neville celebrate winning the Barclaycard Premiership trophy in 2003

The Matildas reportedly present a "convenient" option for the former Manchester United and Everton defender for his next move, instead of taking on a club coaching role.

The next few years are crucial for the Matildas ahead of the 2023 Women's World Cup being hosted in Australia and New Zealand.

The drama of Stajcic's sacking so close to the 2019 Women's World Cup and Milicic's hurried appointment was not an ideal lead-up to the major tournament.

With the likes of Sam Kerr and Ellie Carpenter among the women's football big names in one of the strongest Matildas lineups in history, the pressure is on for the Aussies to reach their full potential.

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