Defiant Rudan launches blistering attack on ALM bosses

George Clarke |

Western Sydney Wanderers coach Marko Rudan continues to give both barrels to the A-League.
Western Sydney Wanderers coach Marko Rudan continues to give both barrels to the A-League.

Western Sydney Wanderers boss Marko Rudan has doubled down on his attack on the A-League Men, turning the gun on commissioner Nick Garcia and bemoaning the competition’s lack of goal-line technology. 

Rudan, who has been slapped with a show-cause notice by Football Australia for comments he made in a six-minute monologue after the Wanderers’ last-gasp 4-3 loss to Macarthur on Sunday, took no prisoners as he fronted media for the first time since that dramatic defeat.

In a 23-minute press conference on Wednesday, the Wanderers boss came out swinging. 

Rudan singled out FA’s head of referees Nathan Magill for what he called a lack of consistency in officiating, having claimed on Sunday there was a “stigma” attached to the Wanderers.

But he saved his most pointed criticism for A-League boss Garcia, who was appointed late last year and whose first act since assuming the role was to make mass redundancies at governing body the Australian Professional Leagues (APL). 

Rudan said it was incumbent on Garcia to liaise with clubs and help solve the issues facing Australia’s top flight. 

A Leagues commisioner Nick Garcia.
A Leagues commisioner Nick Garcia (pictured) was a particular target for Rudan’s criticism. (Dan Himbrechts/AAP PHOTOS)

“We’ve got a new commissioner … Garcia I think his name is,” Rudan said. 

“He was supposed to have a meeting with my CEO, who has only seen him once and (Garcia) was late to that meeting. 

“You would have thought that a new commissioner would go out there and speak to CEOs. Get his feet on the ground and have good conversations to try to improve this game.

“But you’ve got guys who only want to be heard when they’ve got something to say … they’re happy to sit in their houses in Manly.” 

The Wanderers coach said the APL would have been better off investing in refereeing standards or goal-line technology rather than pumping money into the KeepUp website and app, which Garcia has mothballed since taking over from previous chief Danny Townsend. 

Arguments raged on Sunday over whether Macarthur’s winning goal from Valere Germain had crossed the line, with the Wanderers told there were only limited angles available for officials to review. 

FA provide referees and VAR officials but the APL pays for TV production.

Macarthur player Valere Germain celebrates his late goal against WSW.
There was plenty of debate over whether Valere Germain’s late winner for Macarthur crossed the line. (Jeremy Ng/AAP PHOTOS)

“All the money that was thrown away for an app – some of that could have gone into giving (more) referees the ability to make a professional living in the game,” Rudan said. 

“There’s no footage that conclusively tells you that the ball was clearly over the line, so maybe invest in goal-line technology, it happens everywhere else.

“I don’t know what the cost is (but) it goes back to all the losses we made and money that was poorly spent.”

The Wanderers boss, whose side sit in fifth spot after 15 rounds, said he was happy to cop “whatever comes my way” from FA and claimed rival coaches had congratulated him for taking a stand. 

“I get a lot of messages from a lot of coaches and they are supportive of the comments because they’re quite frustrated as well,” Rudan said.

“Everything I do is to put the game or my club, players and fans first.”