Perth Glory coach Alen Stajcic responds to rumours of his imminent departure

Ben Smith
The Nightly
Adam Taggart with Glory coach Alen Stajcic.
Adam Taggart with Glory coach Alen Stajcic. Credit: Paul Kane/Getty Images

Perth Glory coach Alen Stajcic has denied he is on the outer after just one season at the club and is already planning for next year despite rumours of his imminent departure.

Stajcic, who has two years left on his three-year deal, has endured a tumultuous first season in the chair as the Glory copped their second wooden spoon in three years amid a backdrop of off-field instability.

But ahead of their last game of the season, the former Matildas and Central Coast coach hit back at rumours circulating online suggesting he would leave the Glory at season’s end.

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“I don’t know anything about that, to be honest. First I’ve heard of it,” Stajcic said.

When asked whether it was his intention to see out the final two years of his contract, Stajcic responded affirmatively.

“Of course. I haven’t heard any different,” he said.

“We’re planning and preparing for next year.

We’re planning and preparing for next year.

“I don’t think I’ve really changed our views or the narrative around the team, but there’s a lot of hard work to be done to bring this team and this club back up.

“It’s not easy. It’s been extremely difficult this year.”

The Glory play Sydney FC on Sunday to conclude a season which has feature the team in receivership, Tunisian forward Salim Khelifi being loaned to Melbourne Victory against their will, no money for transfers and players being paid by the league.

Perth are yet to conduct their post-season reviews.

Stajcic said he had “a little bit” of contact with new Glory owner Ross Pelligra, who watched Perth’s 8-0 capitulation to Melbourne City in person.

“He’s been here a couple of times, it’s more been (meeting) with (director of football) Stan (Lazaridis) and meeting regularly about rebuilding the team and who we want, who are key pillars for the team already and who we need to bring in to replace those gaps,” he said.

“We want to bring in leadership and bring in leaders who can mold those kids that we brought to the surface this year.

Perth Glory coach Alen Stajcic has responded to rumours of his imminent departure.
Perth Glory coach Alen Stajcic has responded to rumours of his imminent departure. Credit: Paul Kane/Getty Images

“We don’t have an amazing abundance of cash and I don’t think many teams will have, so you‘ve really got to build your strength internally and ensure you grow in a responsible way and growing the kids that we have is probably the most important asset we have.”

Stajcic also shed some light on the difficult circumstances the club had faced even once they were removed from receivership by the arrival of Pelligra, with contract negotiations with players for next season having been delayed.

“That process has been happening since Ross has come in and obviously since Stan’s come in, we’re looking to the future and trying to get through the short-term, but build medium and long-term.

“That’s been tough on the playing group as well. Those negotiations and discussions usually happen in January or December or November; we’ve had to do it in the last five, six weeks, which has been tough for everyone to deal with the realities of life and your careers come a little bit closer to reality.

“That’s something we’ve had to deal with which is unique, which doesn’t usually happen for a whole playing group at this time of the year.”


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