Australian FA ‘expects Graham Arnold to honour Socceroos contract’ amid Hibs link
Chris Nikou, chairman of the Football Federation of Australia (FFA), insisted that any speculation about the former Sydney boss quitting his role to take up a post with the Easter Road side was “news to us”.
Arnold, who took the reins just six months ago, has a contract up until the 2022 World Cup, but has just seen defending champions Australia crash out of the Asian Cup at the quarter-final stage.
Despite that disappointment, Nikou and the FFA are not preparing for Arnold to leave despite reports from ESPN last week suggesting the 55-year-old was interested in succeeding Neil Lennon as head coach of the Capital club.
Nikou told the Sydney Morning Herald: “He (or his representatives) have not approached us.
“He’s got a contract and he would be expected to honour it. He’s only just been appointed. We would expect him to honour his obligations to us.
“Graham has a contract which we expect him to honour. It’s hard to assess, in fairness to Graham [his performance] at the Asian Cup because he didn’t have all the players available to him [through injuries].
“We’ve just appointed Graham and World Cup qualification is the main aim and that’s where the focus needs to be.”
Speculation is mounting over who could take the Hibs job following a weekend of turmoil that saw Neil Lennon suspended pending the outcome of a club probe - and likely to leave the club - following a stormy meeting on Friday afternoon.
Eddie May and Grant Murray took the team on Sunday, leading Hibs to a 3-1 win over St Mirren in Paisley, but former Falkirk boss May won’t seek the position long-term.