New Western Sydney coach Mark Rudan got the phone call to take charge of the Wanderers while he was on the golf course. Now he must steer a struggling club out of some considerable rough.
Local product Rudan was unveiled as the replacement for Carl Robinson on Monday after the Welshman was given the sack following an A-League Men season start yielding just one win from their opening seven games.
The former Western United and Wellington Phoenix boss was at a loss to identify where the Wanderers have been going wrong, but will be given until the end of the season to convince the club hierarchy he is the man to turn them around in the long run.
“From the outside it’s tough (to say),” Rudan said of a club that hasn’t made the finals since 2017.
“I can only comment from what I’ve seen. The personnel are there but only until I get to work will I find out what those answers are.
“You don’t win games on paper. Names are just that. It’s important to understand each individual and get the most out of them.
“We want to make sure we create a team with values that pertain to the area that the club represents.”
Rudan will become the club’s fifth permanent coach in five years when he takes charge of Wednesday’s home game against Perth before facing his old club Western United on Saturday.
The 46-year-old saw the Wanderers lift A-League and AFC Champions League titles under inaugural coach Tony Popovic and welcomed the challenge of restoring the club to its past glory.
“It’s a club from afar that I have seen do some extraordinary things,” he said.
“It would be nice to try and find our way back up the mountain.
“I’m extremely privileged and honoured because this is one of the big four clubs in the league, irrespective of where we are at right now as a football club and over the last few years.
“There’s pressure that’s associated with all of that and I’m very pleased to be here.”