Author Topic: US dollars can't lure Sermanni overseas  (Read 684 times)

Offline David

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 4229
    • View Profile
US dollars can't lure Sermanni overseas
« on: November 22, 2007, 05:42:22 PM »
AUSTRALIAN women's coach Tom Sermanni has knocked back a rich and prestigious job in charge of the US team to remain at the helm of the Matildas for another five years.

The US federation headhunted the 53-year-old Scottish-born coach after the World Cup in China but, after weeks of soul-searching, has opted to stay in Australia. Sermanni, named Asian Coach of the Year in the wake of the Matildas' fairytale run to the World Cup quarter-finals, will now guide them through to the 2012 Olympics.

Sermanni, who coached in the now-defunct US women's professional league with San Jose and New York, was believed to be first choice of the US federation after Greg Ryan was sacked following the World Cup, where the two-time world and Olympic champions finished third. But two weeks ago, Sermanni rejected the offer, and the US last week appointed Swede Pia Sundhage.

"It was a decision I had to consider very seriously," Sermanni said. "When I weighed it all up, I was fairly indecisive when I got made the offer, and I think that's because of what's happening here. The way the game is going here, there's a lot of growth left in this team. I just felt the timing was just not right. It got to the stage where they wanted to bring me across to America to talk about it, and that's when I made up my mind.

"We didn't get down to exact figures, but it's fair to say the US job is the highest paid in women's football. I would be naive to say money's not a factor, but for me it's never been the most influential factor in the decisions I've made. What I don't like doing is messing people about, and after discussions with a few people I decided I really wanted to stay here and see the job through."

Sermanni has agreed a new deal with his employers, Football Federation Australia and the Australian Institute of Sport, and an expanded role is likely to see him act as unofficial technical director of women's football as well as continue as Matildas coach. And after 13 years of on-off involvement in the sport, he can hardly contain his enthusiasm about the changes brought on by the eye-catching performances at the World Cup.

"The World Cup has been the catalyst for change," he said. "The game has a public profile, suddenly people appreciate the level of the game, the level of the players, all that stuff struck a chord. The number of people excited by what happened is amazing. I was quite happy being anonymous before, but I'm not anonymous any more. It's given the game an incredible impetus, and we have to capitalise on it."

http://www.smh.com.au/news/football/us-dollars-cant-lure-sermanni-overseas/2007/11/22/1195321949825.html