March 06, 2015 12:05:18 UK
Central Coast Mariners have axed coach Phil Moss and put newly-appointed technical director Tony Walmsley in temporary charge.
The Mariners, who are 3.25 to beat Melbourne City on Sunday, issued a statement on Friday saying London-born Moss had been “stood aside, effective immediately”.
Moss has posted a 37 per cent win rate in his 53 games in charge of the Gosford club, having taken the reins in November 2013.
He had been assistant to championship-winning coach Graham Arnold and stepped in when Arnold moved to Japan to coach Vegalta Sendai.
Moss coached the Mariners to a third-place finish last season to earn them a place in this year’s Asian Champions League play-offs.
But his side lost 3-1 at home to Guangzhou R & F last month to miss out on the ACL group stages, and have had a disappointing A-League campaign.
After winning their opening game against Newcastle Jets in October, the Mariners went 12 games without a victory.
They have lost two of their last three matches and are eighth in the table, eight points outside the Finals Series places.
Moss has lost nine of his 19 games in charge this season, and his side have averaged less than a goal per game.
The Mariners issued a statement saying Walmsley would take charge of the team for the rest of the season while the club searched for a new permanent coach.
The statement added: “The decision is part of stage two of executive vice chairman Peter Storrie’s restructure that will also see Hyundai A-League assistant coach Wayne O’Sullivan offered a new role at the club.
“The next phase of the Central Coast Mariners restructure will also include a fresh look at the operation of youth football that will be made evident in the near future.”
Club captain John Hutchinson, who is to retire at the end of the season, will step up into a player-coach role for the rest of the campaign.
The Mariners said Hutchinson would be retained as a coach beyond this season.
Melbourne City are 2.25 to win their game against the Mariners with the draw 3.25.
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