World News – UA – Robinson to be unveiled as Wanderers coach as Newcastle’s future is balanced


The future of the Newcastle Jets hangs in the balance amid a property crisis that has sparked the imminent departure of coach Carl Robinson to A-League rivals Western Sydney Wanderers

Robinson is set to be revealed by the Wanderers on Thursday, according to sources familiar with the club’s pursuit of the former Welsh international, who visited Blacktown headquarters earlier this week after Jean-Paul was sacked from Marigny

The Jets confirmed in a statement Wednesday that an « official approach » had been made for Robinson by Western Sydney, who scheduled a major announcement on Thursday morning

Negotiations are essentially over, but the Jets have more serious problems than finding a replacement for Robinson

McKinna has been on the lookout for a new owner for over a year with President Martin Lee no longer able to fund the club due to difficulties getting money out of China

Their financial problems are believed to have contributed to Robinson’s decision to leave the Jets, who only appointed him coach in February on a three-and-a-half-year contract and guided them to six wins and three draws on his 10 games at the helm so far

Chinese lighting mogul Martin Lee wants to give the Newcastle Jets to a new ownerCredit: Getty Images

Robinson’s contract is believed to have an exit clause that allows him to move to western Sydney

The Australian Football Federation board met on Wednesday to discuss the fate of Newcastle and continue due diligence on potential buyers waiting behind the scenes, sources say, with urgent decisions needed taking into account given the club’s financial situation

The Jets have a long list of creditors and could run the risk of collapsing without an immediate financial injection, but given the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Australian sport, it is unlikely that the FFA have the ability to bail out the club if Lee had to surrender his A-League license

The FFA declined to answer questions about the status of possible new owners for the Jets and whether the federation was able to run the club in the worst case scenario

McKinna did not return the calls but confirmed on Fox Sports News that Robinson was likely to leave. He said the Wanderers had been totally « outspoken » throughout the process and expressed confidence in the future of the club

« The club will be sadly missed but Carl aspires to be a top manager and at the moment with the uncertainty at Newcastle Jets which is why he would probably consider leaving as we did everything right by Carl and the coaches, ”he said

« We hope to have an owner very, very soon. I can assure Newcastle Jets fans that the Jets will kick off the new A-League season when it arrives »

Club owners are expected to assume full control of the competition in the coming weeks, with a legal separation from FFA expected to be finalized by the end of the year – but until that happens , it is not known who would hold the license of a club unable to continue in the A-League

As the Herald revealed in August, some A-League owners have discussed pooling funds to buy out struggling clubs like the Jets, and this could be the first time such a plan is used in case a suitable buyer cannot be found

The A-League is set to expand to 12 teams with the introduction of Macarthur FC next season, and the loss of one club would be a blow to the competition, which is only a year old on his current broadcast contract with Fox Sports

Meanwhile, the Wanderers have refused an approach from representatives of Western United star Max Burgess, fearing a perceived conflict of interest with Robinson’s management

Burgess still has one season on his contract with Western United but despite this, A-League sources indicate he has been shopping at NSW clubs

The 25-year-old is managed by Avid Sports & Entertainment Group – the same agency as Robinson, his Jets assistant Kenny Miller and several players who signed for the club during his tenure, including Joe Ledley, Bernie Ibini and James Donachie

Western United general manager Chris Pehlivanis has confirmed Burgess is a « contracted and required player » for the club and will not sanction the move to an A-League rival – as sources familiar with the situation indicated that Western Sydney was unwilling to entertain him for apparent reasons

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Western Sydney Wanderers FC, Newcastle Jets FC, A-League, Carl Robinson

World News – AU – Robinson to be revealed as Wanderers coach as future of Newcastle is in balance


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