Western United FC today announced the Club and Head Coach Mark Rudan have mutually agreed to part ways.
“On behalf of Western United FC and our supporters, I’d like to thank Mark for his leadership and dedication to the Club over the last two seasons,” said Western United Chairman Jason Sourasis.
“Mark departs Western United with our utmost respect for all his hard work and contribution in establishing the foundation of the Club’s elite football program.
"Also, as a start-up professional sporting club, we are greatly appreciative of Mark’s efforts in helping build the Western United brand and spreading the Green & Black message in the community.”
Sourasis added, “Mark and the Club agreed that a change of direction was needed at this time. We will use the opportunity to reset the Club’s on-field objectives for the forthcoming season in order to meet the longer-term ambitions of our football club.”
Mark was announced as Western United’s first-ever head coach on May 23, 2019. In its inaugural season, Mark led Western United to a place in the A-League Finals Series with the team falling short of making the Grand Final by one game.
In the season recently concluded, another finals series beckoned until the last month when congested fixtures, suspensions and injuries took its toll on the playing group.
“I would like to thank Western United FC for the opportunity to lead this young club over the past two years,” said Mark Rudan.
“It’s been a rewarding experience for me both personally and professionally, and I’m thankful for some amazing relationships I have made since coming to Melbourne and coaching at this great club.
“I am really proud of what this group has achieved over only two seasons despite all the challenges Covid has thrown up.
“I want to thank the players, coaches, technical and administrative staff for all their hard work and support over the past two years.
"Further, I’d like to thank the Board of Western United for giving me the opportunity to be the Club’s inaugural head coach, and the support they have given to me and my family while in this role.
“Finally, I would like to say a special thank you to the fans of Western United.
"This sport is special and it wouldn’t be anything without our fans. I truly believe in the vision of Western United which will redefine the football landscape when it builds its stadium in Melbourne’s west.
"The Green & Black supporters are going on an amazing journey with this club.”
Assistant Coach John Anastasiadis will oversee the team while the Club conducts a comprehensive search to appoint a new Head Coach.
Western United wishes Mark the best of luck in his future endeavours, and he will forever remain an important figure in Western United’s history as the Club’s inaugural Head Coach.