McMahon parts ways with Perth Glory
Perth Glory coach Steve McMahon claims he is still mystified by the circumstances that left him with the unwanted tag as the first A-League coach to lose his job.
McMahon and the club released a joint statement on Wednesday stating both parties "have agreed to go separate ways following joint discussions between (Glory chairman) Nick Tana and Steve McMahon."
But McMahon's statement paints the picture of a man baffled by the decision, while Glory players have also come out in support of their former coach.
In his statement, the former Liverpool and England midfielder claimed articles published recently stating he would be leaving the club at the end of the year regardless of how the team performed were "unfounded".
But he finds himself out of a job just over three months into the A-League's inaugural season.
"I still don't know myself what has led to this situation and feel hurt and upset by articles published recently which are unfounded," McMahon said.
"The situation has come as a complete shock to me and my family. We are not aware of any problems at the club, which I leave in a good position.
"I hope that all this nonsense will not have an adverse affect on the players and supporters of Perth Glory."
The club will make an announcement on the coaching situation during the A-League break, with assistant Alan Vest among the contenders to take over.
Technical director and former Glory coach Mich d'Avray reportedly isn't interested in the position.
McMahon's tenure began in dubious fashion when he blasted his players after a defeat to Sydney FC in a Club World Championship qualifier in May, their first competitive match.
McMahon labelled the players "frightened", admitting later he had been too harsh.
The club then had to quash rumours of a player revolt in July, when the playing group held a two-hour meeting with McMahon and d'Avray that ended without incident.
The coach also copped criticism for his recruits, including his son Stephen McMahon jnr and foreign strikers Brian Deane and Neil Teggart, who have both left the club.
A five-match unbeaten run that lifted the Glory into the top four eased the pressure on McMahon, but reports of his demise at season's end re-surfaced this week.
Goalkeeper Jason Petkovic and defender Ante Kovacevic told Channel Seven speculation of a player push to oust McMahon was incorrect.
"As far as I'm concerned, I haven't got a problem with him," Petkovic said.
"He's the coach, the club employed him and it's my job to listen to him."
"Everything's been going pretty well, I suppose," Kovacevic added.
"We're sitting fourth and we haven't played the best, but if you're not playing your best and we're still up there in the mix, then you must be doing something right."
McMahon re-iterated in his statement his belief that he leaves the club on good terms.
"I would also like to categorically state that I leave the club on good terms with the Board, players and staff," he said.
"This has been a difficult time for all of us over the past few days and I hope we will now be able to get on with our lives."