For reasons unclear, Ange Postecoglou left his post as coach of the Socceroos after guiding the team through qualifying for the 2018 FIFA World Cup tournament.
The post, as we well know, went to Bert van Marwijk, who has plenty with which to deal with a squad that is given hardly any shot of getting beyond the Group stage and would consider it a moral victory of the highest calibre if they were able to gain a point in the tournament.
At least van Marwijk does not have to contend with the maelstrom Justin Langer inherited when he took the helm of the Baggy Green.
Never a shrinking violet, however, Ange was not shy about offering van Marwijk suggestions about the players in the pre-tournament camp who should make the final 23.
Postecoglou announced that Daniel Arzani and Tim Cahill should be on the XI.
Cahill may be deserving of at least some time on the field and if he can summon some of his big-stage magic that he provided in three previous World Cups, everyone who agrees with Postecoglou and us will be unbearable come July and August.
As for Arzani, he is the posterchild for French motivation after declaring he would be happy to receive an opportunity to nutmeg a certain French player.
Three players face the prospect of a long flight from Turkey, where the Socceroos train, back to Australia with World Cup hopes dashed.
Both Cahill and Arzani present some thorny issues.
Cahill has struggled to find playing time and Arzani is untested, yet in the words of Postecoglou, “You take them both,” Postecoglou told Melbourne radio station SEN. “There shouldn’t be a debate about Arzani … we have very few players like Daniel Arzani.”
Postecoglou claims that the pressure of the 22-match marathon the Socceroos required to punch their ticket to Russia was too stressful for him. He now plies his football trade in Japan.