Aurelio Vidmar,
Former Socceroos skipper Aurelio Vidmar has been appointed Melbourne City's A-League Men coach. Image by David Mariuz/AAP PHOTOS
  • soccer

Aurelio Vidmar to lead Melb City after Vidosic axed

Anna Harrington November 1, 2023

Caretaker coach Aurelio Vidmar has been charged with turning Melbourne City’s A-League Men season around after Rado Vidosic was sacked just two games into the new campaign.

Vidosic paid the price for losing the first two games of the new campaign, headlined by a disastrous 6-0 hammering at Adelaide United on Sunday.

He was moved from coaching City’s A-League Women side into the ALM hot-seat in November last year when Patrick Kisnorbo left to join French outfit Troyes. 

Rado Vidosic.
 Rado Vidosic has been axed as head coach after Melbourne City’s poor start to the ALM season. Image by Morgan Hancock/AAP PHOTOS 

The 62-year-old was appointed on a permanent basis in February and guided City to last season’s premiership, but oversaw a 6-1 thrashing by Central Coast Mariners in the grand final.

City announced in a statement on Wednesday that former Socceroos captain Vidmar would take the reins until the end of the current campaign. 

Given how early into the season he is entering the fray, Vidmar’s tenure could well prove an audition for the top job.

Vidmar, 56, took training on Wednesday and will take charge for City’s Friday meeting with Sydney FC at AAMI Park.

“In Aurelio we have someone whose credentials speak for themselves and who is also committed to playing an attacking, possession-based brand of football that aligns with our own football philosophy,” football director Michael Petrillo said.

Vidmar’s most recent coaching post was with Thai club Bangkok United in 2022.

He was Ange Postecoglou’s assistant with the Socceroos in the national side’s Asian Cup triumph in 2015 and has also coached Australia’s youth teams.

The former Socceroos captain notably led Adelaide for 73 league games between 2007 and 2010 (25-21-27).

He was well-known for his fiery press conferences while at United, including famously calling Adelaide a “p***ant town” in 2009.

Aurelio Vidmar.
 Former Adelaide United ALM coach Aurelio Vidmar (pic) has replaced Rado Vidosic at Melbourne City. Image by David Mariuz/AAP PHOTOS 

Vidmar, supported by Vidosic’s former assistants Petr Kratky and Scott Jamieson, will need to find a way to quickly get City back firing.

A massive off-season overhaul – with Marco Tilio, Aiden O’Neill, Jordy Bos and Tom Glover among high-profile departures – plus injuries to Mathew Leckie and Andrew Nabbout, didn’t help City’s start to 2023-24.

The club’s new signings are yet to gel, with City exiting the Australia Cup in the semi-finals and juggling the ALM season with the travel of an Asian Champions League campaign.

But Sunday’s unacceptable heavy loss to Adelaide clearly forced City’s hand.

Musa Toure celebrates a goal for Adelaide against Melbourne City.
 Sunday’s 6-0 hammering at Adelaide spelled the end of Rado Vidosic’s time as Melbourne City coach. Image by Matt Turner/AAP PHOTOS 

Former technical director Vidosic – who also won silverware with the club’s ALW side – managed City’s men for 25 league games (12 wins, seven draws, six losses).

“We are immensely grateful to Rado for his contributions to Melbourne City over the past five years,” the club’s CEO Brad Rowse said in a statement. 

“From our men’s and women’s teams to our youth academy, Rado’s impact has been significant. We wish him the very best in his future endeavours.”