Foxe pulls pin on Wanderers after Hunter horror show

Discord is erupting off the field as well as on it at Western Sydney Wanderers, with assistant coach Hayden Foxe quitting the embattled club.

Hayden Foxe

Wanderers assistant coach Hayden Foxe Source: Getty Images

Insiders claim Foxe announced he was quitting in the dressing room after the final whistle of Friday night's 4-0 defeat to Newcastle with the club confirming his resignation in a press release on Saturday.

The 4-0 defeat was a new low for besieged head coach Josep Gombau, leaving his own tenure hanging by a thread.

In a statement, Wanderers CEO John Tsatsimas thanked Foxe for his contributions to the club.

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“Hayden has been a fantastic member of our club’s backroom staff since his arrival in 2015,” said Tsatsimas.

“We wish Hayden every success in his future coaching career.”

Foxe, 40, led Wanderers to one A-League win, four draws and an FFA Cup loss to Adelaide United in his brief tenure as caretaker coach following the shock departure of head coach Tony Popovic on the eve of the season.

A keen student of Popovic's teachings, Foxe took the reins at the beginning of October seeking to the land the job on a full-time basis and insisting little would change in the style and methodology preached by his mentor and predecessor.



Opting for greater experience, Wanderers owner Paul Lederer installed Gombau ahead of rookie coach Foxe at Wanderland early last month, with the Spaniard immediately binning Popovic's blueprint and asking the squad to follow the beat of a drastically different tactical drum.

It's believed ex-Socceroo Foxe, who has been part of the Wanderers coaching set-up since 2015, has become disillusioned with the direction the club is headed under Gombau, and the Jets drubbing may have been a defeat too far.

In Gombau's six matches to date, he has presided over four defeats, a draw and just a single win, while simultaneously ripping up the Popovic playbook and installing a more free-wheeling, uninhibited style.

But with 14 goals conceded and just three scored, the former Adelaide United and Olyroos' edicts are falling on deaf ears with a squad seemingly incapable of adapting.

The World Game approached both Gombau and the club on Friday night for a comment on Foxe's future, without receiving a reply.



Foxe said on taking charge after Popovic's exit: "They wouldn’t have put me in this position if they didn’t respect my views and if I didn’t have the backing of the players."

Originally from Sydney’s west, Foxe added: "I know how the club is run. I know what the expectations are.

“I know the community. I grew up here as a boy. I know what the west represents.”


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3 min read
Published 23 December 2017 at 7:10am
By Dave Lewis