“This
was not a resignation, we simply brought forward the termination day of his
contract.”

So
ran the spin from fumbling Football Federation Australia (FFA) Chief Executive
John O’Neill late yesterday after the Federation announced the early departure of Socceroos coach Frank
Farina.

O’Neill
and his FFA chairman Frank Lowy have performed a messy but
necessary stab in the back just days after O’Neill stated that Farina’s
job was safe. But it was time for him to go as Lowy observed:

Ideally,
I would have liked Farina to have departed sooner. If the change, if any, would
have happened 12 months ago I think we would have been better off. But given
the history of football, things happen when they happen. It’s happened now and
it should not diminish our opportunity to go to Germany.

Having believed that Farina wasn’t up to the job of
guiding the Socceroos since their last
World Cup qualification failure, I have no problem with his belated
ditching – even this close to our next round of qualification. At
least Lowy had the decency to admit that Farina should have
gone sooner.

Perhaps
the biggest casualty in all of this is John O’Neill. Based on his employment assurances to
Farina post-Confederations’ Cup, how can we place much store in what he has to
say in the future?

Peter Fray

Get your first 12 weeks of Crikey for $12.

Without subscribers, Crikey can’t do what it does. Fortunately, our support base is growing.

Every day, Crikey aims to bring new and challenging insights into politics, business, national affairs, media and society. We lift up the rocks that other news media largely ignore. Without your support, more of those rocks – and the secrets beneath them — will remain lodged in the dirt.

Join today and get your first 12 weeks of Crikey for just $12.

 

Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey

JOIN NOW