Ok, so the official site has announced it - but pretty much everybody seemed to know the facts of the matter a long time ago. The question of who leaked it - maybe even how many leaked it - is impossible to know, but it's the return of a bad old habit, one that I wish would go away.
Anyway, what to make of the disengaging of Horsey? I'm not one for syaing a first year coach coming in straight after finishing their playing career will always be a liability. That's a nonsense argument, and there's enough bad coaches who get job after job in this state to render it even more stupid.
Horsey has a reputation for being a tough negotiator, as well as stubbornness, certainly when it came to signing his last playing contract with us, and I would not expect that to have changed in his time as coach. He's obviously keen on making coaching a serious career - he's been racking up coaching licences - but the never ending circus surrounding the assistant roles never gave much confidence in regards to who was actually in charge and with whom the buck stopped - David Lugli got the arse, Joe Montemurro was often given credit for 'the right moves' and the other bloke 'Franz' did I know not sure what.
Of course, the six point deduction will come up and complicate matters. With those points we would have finished fourth - better than missing out on the finals and dealing with the interminable 'what could have been' argument. And the momentum kicked out from under you, and the sucker punch of having to deal with that for close to a whole season, something that was out of your control is still hurting the players - it was readily apparent at the MVP night.
But having said all that, the team should have done a lot better than it did. The forward problems never got solved, defensively we were a mess, and our brilliant fluid football which appeared every now and again made that all the more frustrating. Too much was left to too few this season - particularly Fernando's surprisingly good season and Peter Zois' pulling off several amazing saves to get us over the line or keep scorelines at least respectable. Some of the substitutions and set ups in particular seemed to boggle the mind. The insistence of still playing Gianni De Nittis alone up front for much of the year; the putting on of attacking wingers - notably Kyle Joryeff - when we were in the lead and needing to shut down the game; the often and obvious defensive incoherence, torn apart most notably by Northcote who made a mockery of the high line and offside trap style we attempted to play; and perhaps most tragically, the disappearance of last year's MVP winner Sebastian Petrovic off the face of the earth, in relative terms at least.
So, having said that all that, I'm personally not disappointed that Vaughan's been shown the door. But what of his replacement and his credentials? He coached a cashed up and professional Carlton, got them to a grand final, and then 11th. Coached Marconi, who by that time were making the finals and not much else. Of course, everyone will remember that Eddie coached us for a season in 2001/02 - the season after Mike Petersen (and several players) ditched us for the Football Kingz. But even more so, that season will be remembered for Con Boutsianis. It was Con's return half way through that season that turned around what was looking like a bottom two finish. Sure a lot of youth got blooded, but that was by necessity. Eddie didn't come back the next year.
For most of the past few years, he's been the player agent business. He obviously has to let go of that pursuit now that he's a coach, but it could well mean the addition of several clients to our playing roster, and possible, foreseeable complications. My opinions of him as a coach are, at best, cloudy and tainted by factors outside his control. It could be refreshing though to have someone with his sense of style back at the club - there was a guy with a gay leather biker jacket at the MVP night yesterday - not that there's anything wrong with that. How about that though? Bamboo Harvester replaced by Mr. Ed.