A-League: Paul Pezos in strong contention to coach Roar

Adelaide City NPL mentor Paul Pezos is the early favourite to coach Brisbane Roar next season following the sacking of Warren Moon.

The Roar on Tuesday confirmed Englishman Nick Green, a former Brisbane City NPL coach, has replaced Moon – who was axed on Monday – in an interim capacity for the remainder of the A-League season.

Unless Green works miracles between now and the end of the season, it’s extremely unlikely he’ll become the club’s permanent coach.

Roar general manager Ante Kovacevic confirmed Pezos, former Brisbane assistant coach Ross Aloisi and ex-Socceroos striker Damian Mori were among the contenders for the job.

At this stage, 44-year-old Pezos – who made three A-League appearances for Perth Glory in 2006 – is the frontrunner.

When contracted by News Corp Australia on Tuesday, Pezos – who guided Adelaide City to last year’s NPL South Australia premiership-championship double – made no secret of his desire to coach the Roar next season.

“I definitely do; I have done all my coaching badges so I can be a career coach,” he said.

Aloisi is currently without a position after parting ways at the end of last year with Japanese champions Yokohama F. Marinos, where he was an assistant to Kevin Muscat.

Aloisi’s previous stint at the Roar ended on ordinary terms with club owners The Bakrie Group following the removal of his brother John Aloisi as head coach in December 2018.

Ex-Roar marksman and two-time Johnny Warren medallist Mori is currently on Adelaide United’s coaching staff.

Kovacevic also did not rule out the appointment of an overseas coach.

He also defended the club’s decision to sack Moon, with the Roar struggling in second-last spot on the ladder and without a win in their past seven matches.

“It’s a results-based industry,” Kovacevic said.

“Time is running out this season and we need try something different.”

Many felt Moon had performed admirably under the constraints of a tight budget since taking charge in 2020 after the club parted ways with Liverpool great Robbie Fowler.

But it was an argument that didn’t wash with Kovacevic.

“I’d say the Central Coast Mariners (2nd) and Adelaide United (3rd) are run on similar budgets to us and look where they are on the ladder,” he said.

Kovacevic also backed the hiring of the little-known Green, who was recommended for the role by Roar legal adviser Dale Cliff.

“He was on the ground, he was available and we needed someone quickly,” he said of Green.

“I’ve heard people say good things about him and bad things about him … but football is a game of opinions.”

Moon’s coaching staff will remain in their roles, with Green adding Joe Dolan to the football department.

Kovacevic denied suggestions Green’s appointment was part of a move for his Pro-Player Academy to be integrated into the Roar system.

“There’ll be no outsourcing of an academy to anybody,” he said.

The Roar shut its academy in October last year, but retained senior NPL and under-23 teams which are mainly filled by players aged from 15 to 21.

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