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Coaches union critical of FFA's management review

Matildas captain and star striker Sam Kerr sits down with ESPN to share her journey from Aussie rules to soccer and what coming home to Perth truly means.

Sacked Matildas coach Alen Stajcic will not be allowed to be interviewed or make submissions to an independent review of FFA national team management, Australia's football coaches union has argued.

FFA announced on Aug. 19 that a three-person panel chaired by businesswoman Diane Smith-Gander along with ex-Australia netball captain Liz Ellis and Sydney Olympics bid mastermind Rod McGeoch will undertake the review.

The panel will investigate decision-making processes and the way in which items are reported to the FFA board within national teams, in the wake of Stajcic's controversial sacking in January.

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The panel will not review Stajcic's actual termination just months before this year's Women's World Cup, but will use the decision as an example to shed light on processes within national team management structures.

Football Coaches Australia (FCA) has welcomed the review but says the panel's terms of reference are too narrow.

Under the terms, the panel can only interview relevant FFA senior management and national team staff as well as review existing documentation, information and correspondence.

The FCA said among those who could be interviewed are people who have since departed FFA or signalled their intention to depart, such as chief executive David Gallop and head of women's football Emma Highwood.

Alen Stajcic
Alen Stajcic was controversially sacked as Matildas boss in January.

The terms, however, would prevent Stajcic from being an active participant in the inquiry's review.

"Although FCA understands and acknowledges that the review is not seeking to determine the validity of the decision to terminate Alen, we fear the terms of reference in their current state will not permit the panel to arrive at findings that ensure that such a situation never occurs again in future," FCA president Phil Moss said in a statement.

The panel's report is expected to be delivered to the FFA board by the end of October.

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