Popovic never asked me to join him in Turkey, Foxe reveals

Western Sydney will approach the start of the A-League season exactly as planned despite the shock departure of their coach, the club's caretaker Hayden Foxe says.

Hayden Foxe

Tiny Popovic (L) and Hayden Foxe (R) Source: Twitter @BlacktownSun

Foxe took the clipboard on Tuesday, two days after it was revealed foundation coach Tony Popovic was leaving, along with assistants Zeljko Kalac and Andres Carrasco, bound for Turkish club Karabukspor.

The former Socceroos defender, who has spent five years serving as an assistant across stints at Melbourne Heart and the Wanderers, revealed Popovic never offered him the chance to join him in Turkey like fellow assistants Kalac and Carrasco.

"No, No, everyone was in a bit of shock with the announcement and my alliances lie with the Western Sydney Wanderers and I'm staying here, I'm going nowhere," he said.

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"No I wasn't (offered it), that wasn't a conversation Tony and I had.



"This is a privilege, I've been at this club, this is the fourth season. I know how this club is run, I know what the expectations are, I know the community. I grew up here as a boy, my family still lives here, I know what the west represents.

"So I'm honored to be in this role at the moment."

Foxe said he was "not going to say no" to throwing his hat into the ring for the permanent role.

Wanderers boss John Tsatsimas re-iterated the club wouldn't be rushed into a decision but credited Foxe for helping Popovic establish the franchise's culture.

Tsatsimas said the level of interest in filling Popovic's shoes has "been crazy".

"It's certainly left us flabbergasted and it's indicative of how far this club has come in a very short period," he said.

Despite the huge disruption, Foxe says he's told the Wanderers' players "nothing changes" ahead of their season-opener against Perth on Sunday.

"We just carry on as usual with the job at hand and that's to take and get all three points against Perth Glory on the weekend," Foxe said.

"We've had 15 weeks of strenuous hard work. The players have been waiting for these moments a week out from the season, they're jumping at the bit."

Foxe said the coaching change was "a little hiccup" but that football always produced surprises.

"The boys are very resilient in what they can control. They can't control outside influences," he said.


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Published 4 October 2017 at 9:37am