Josep Gombau was appointed as the new head coach of Western Sydney Wanderers at the beginning of November and the 41-year-old has huge shoes to fill at the Parramatta Stadium. He took a watching brief during his first A-League assignment and would have been pleased with his sides battling performance against Melbourne Victory to earn a creditable point.
Source: Josep Gombau via Twitter
Gombau is a familiar name to A-League fans from his two-year stint at Adelaide United which saw his side beat Perth Glory in the FFA Cup Final. He was also famed for bringing a Spanish style to the division and has been chosen as the man to succeed the extremely popular Tony Popovic.
Popovic virtually built his squad from scratch, bringing plenty of success to the club and few fans could begrudge him the opportunity to manage Turkish top flight side Karabukspor. His assistant Hayden Foxe remains at the club and is looking forward to working alongside the incoming boss.
Gombau left Adelaide to take up a coaching role with the United States back in 2015 and since his last A-League stint, he’s also been working with the Australian Under 23s.
Western Sydney Wanderers were believed to be chasing Croatia boss Ante Milicic but weren’t able to secure his services prompting a delay in appointing Popovic’s successor. Gombau has a decent squad to work with including fellow Spaniards Alvaro Cejudo, Raul Llorente and Oriol Riera. The latter missed a spot-kick during the 1-1 with Melbourne Victory, spurning the chance to secure three points in front of his new boss.
Source: Sport Daily via Twitter
Under Foxe’s tutelage, Western Sydney Wanderers have made a bright start to the new A-League season and sit in fourth place with five games played. They’ve suffered from too many draws this season but remain unbeaten and it gives the new coach plenty to build upon. Wanderers chairman Paul Lederer was impressed by Gombau and stressed that his appointment is part of their long-term vision. Very few fans are expecting a title bid this year with the club only starting as fifth favourites at the beginning of the season but they are now firmly eyeing up the Champions League spots.
Their good recent form has seen them move up to third in the betting and any soccer fans who wish to back them for success this season or more realistically to finish in the top two can take advantage of a number of sign-up offers from Australian bookmakers including $250 of free bets with Ladbrokes, which can be used to back the Wanderers to flourish under Josep Gombau.
Western Sydney Wanderers must continue to make themselves difficult to beat if they are to close the gap on runaway leaders Sydney FC, who were the pre-season favourites to make it back-to-back titles under Graham Arnold.
Gombau isn’t the sort of coach who will rip things up and stamp his authority on the club which is the best approach to a unique team such as Western Sydney Wanderers. They have begun the season positively and the appointment of the Spanish coach should help them to continue their upward momentum.