Former Victory coach Kevin Muscat ruled out of Auckland expansion club role

Former Melbourne Victory and J-League title-winning coach Kevin Muscat has confirmed his next move is to China, ending speculation he’s among the contenders for Auckland’s A-League expansion club.

Muscat (50) has been unveiled as the head coach of Chinese Super League club Shanghai Port FC, since leaving his job as head coach of Japan’s Yokohama F.Marionos who he led to the 2022 J1 League title and a Japanese Super Cup win this year.

Main photo: Kevin Muscat … heading to China.

Award-winning NZ Herald football writer Michael Burgess included the former Socceroos defender on a shortlist of candidates in the running for the role of head coach at the new Auckland club.

Others tipped by Burgess to be contenders were:

  • Wellington Phoenix reserves coach Chris Greenacre (45), who the new club’s backer Bill Foley has told reporters he’s someone “they were interested in talking to.”
  • Former Sydney FC head coach Steve Corica (50) who was replaced in November by former Phoenix boss Ufuk Talay, after a poor start to the A-League season.
  • Former All Whites head coach Danny Hay (48),  now in charge at NPL (Western Australia) club, Perth Soccer Club.

Burgess described Muscat as a wildcard, saying he understood he had talked with the Auckland hierarchy.

He quoted a source as saying two more candidates were both Australian, former A-League coaches and described as “high profile” names.

The yet-to-be-named expansion club has already appointed former Sydney star Terry McFlynn as its director of football.

He’s on the record as saying the club wants to appoint its men’s head coach before Christmas, so the club can start recruitment in the January transfer window.

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