Jorvan Vieira who was last seen leading the Iraq national team to its fairy tale win in the Asian Cup has thrown in his bid to be the next Socceroos coach. Vieira sees a similar situation in the Socceroos as he did with the Iraqi squad. No not in the sectarian warfare between the Melbourne Victory and Adelaide United. Its the short turnaround time before the World Cup qualifiers begins.
In barely two months Australia begins its campaign and this time it will be a tough act to follow with its confidence levels rock bottom after their disastrous Asian Cup outing. But Vieira is confident he can turn things around.
"It was exactly two months before the competition that I took Iraq and we made a great job with the support of the players, and this is what is great about the Australian players. I'm sure they want to erase, what in my view, was their poor participation in the Asian Cup."
Vieira was offered a position by the FFA to work alongside Dick Advocaat in August but turned it down because he wanted to coach on his own terms.
Jesse Fink believes that Vieira is the right sort of coach to lead the Socceroos ahead of Fabio Capello or a Jurgen Klinsmann and takes the FFA to task in its myopic pursuit of these big names.
"And that's the real problem. The same snobbery-cum-myopia that got us into so much trouble at the Asian Cup and Asian Champions League - ie, thinking we're the ants pants when really we know sweet FA about even our closest neighbours in the AFC - is still alive and well at FFA headquarters as it is in broader Australian society."
Vieira agrees that this sort of blinkered vision could get Australia into trouble again.
"Now in Asia there is another level and you see in many Asian clubs and national teams they have coaches from many different nations and different continents. It's important for Australia to be in direct contact with this kind of level to progress," Vieira added.
He is not very enamoured of the FFA frontrunners either.
"Whatever coach Australia takes has to have experience in Asia. Don't think about the big names. I hear about [Jurgen] Klinsmann and Capello. They are fantastic for the marketing department but we're not looking for marketing. We're looking for results."
My two bits. Australia should not get ahead of itself. As proven in the past few years, the rest of Asia is surging ahead in the quality of soccer that is being played. A big name like Capello or a Klinsmann will not bring any leading insight or experience into the Asian game but their reputation will lead to inflated expectations. A dangerous combination. I know John Howard has done untold damage to the Oz psyche but maybe Kevin Rudd can steer them to a less hubristic path.