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Ange's story leaves burning question unanswered

Soccer

Ange Postecoglou will allow the sideshow of his coaching future to roll on through next month’s World Cup qualifiers.

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And furthermore, the Socceroos coach appears to be revelling in the mischief sparked by a report suggesting he’ll walk from his job after the home-and-away tie with Honduras.

Postecoglou appeared in an updated episode of Australian Story on ABC TV last night, charting his rise from an NSL player to Asian Cup winning coach.

In a new interview, Postecoglou is directly asked whether he will stay through to the World Cup if Australia successfully defeats Honduras.

His answer is baffling.

“It’s a real kind of a facetious question because people just want me to fit into their stereotype and answer it in a way that makes themselves feel really good about themselves,” he said.

“If people are really worried about my future they should be worried about these two games. But they’re not. They just want an answer to a question and I’m not going to give ’em it.”

While Postecoglou’s stand-off has befuddled observers of the national team, he maintains support of the playing group.

“The players respect me. They don’t need to love me, and I think I have the players respect,” he said.

“We’ve got an absolutely crucial couple of games coming up.

“My whole focus and everything I’ll be doing is we get the job done. I want us to qualify for another World Cup. I still believe we’re on track.

Earlier on Monday, FFA chief executive David Gallop said he wouldn’t allow the “will he won’t he” saga to affect the national team.

Should Postecoglou walk after qualifying, the Socceroos would have just seven months to appoint and blood a new coach in time for the Russian showpiece.

“We’ve seen in football – we saw it with Tony Popovic at the Wanderers in the past month or so – football is fluid,” Gallop said.

“People move. We’ll adjust to that I’m sure.

“The Socceroos don’t play again until March, so we’ve got a relatively long stretch of inactivity.

“That will give us an opportunity to make a decision with Ange about the future.”

Gallop was equally adamant on Friday that Postecoglou would not be pushed to make a decision before the Honduras tie.

But he admitted that didn’t mean he wasn’t scouring the market for a possible replacement.

“We’re always looking at options,” Gallop said. “Because of the fluid nature of football you’re always considering the contingencies, the future.

“We’ve always got an eye on where we’re at both in terms of the Socceroos and our junior national teams.”

-AAP 

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