04/03/2024

Graham Arnold, current manager of the Socceroos. (PHOTO: Socceroos - X)

Arnold is reportedly “keen to consider” a move to Scottish Premiership side Hibernian FC, with two other Championship sides also interested in his services.

The Socceroos boss has been named on a short-list of managerial options for Hibs, who’ve sacked Lee Johnson after three straight losses to start their SPFL campaign, according to Sky Sports.

The links to Scotland and two unnamed English Championship clubs, comes just seven months after Arnold signed a three-and-a-half-year contract extension with Football Australia, off the back of the Aussies’ extraordinary run to the knockout round of the Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup.

But would Arnold really consider a move back to club football so soon after committing himself to another World Cup cycle with the national team?

When his new contract was announced, Arnold said he had rebuffed several offers from overseas clubs, citing his passion and optimism for Australian football.

“I just love [the Socceroos], every time I put that Socceroos shirt on, or I’m around the Socceroos, I bleed green and gold,” he said.

“I have so much belief in the group of players, and the great staff that I’ve got, that this is just the start.”

Arnold’s clear love for the national team places a fair amount of doubt into just how seriously he might be considering a move to Scotland, he could well be just playing nice to keep his options open for the future.

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However, Arnold also made it clear that the senior team would not be his sole focus during this World Cup cycle, saying he wants to leave a legacy by supporting the junior pathways and finding Australian men’s football, a home.

“It’s not just about the Socceroos, I want to help Australian kids, I want to help the pathways, I want to help get the Socceroos a home,” he said.

“How can you have a football culture if you don’t have a home?

“It’s crazy to think that the Socceroos don’t get any high-performance funding from the government.

“It’s not just getting the football right, the government needs to help.”

The lack of government support is what could potentially be a source of frustration for Arnold and tempt him into a move to European club football.

No one would begrudge the $200 million investment into women’s sport by the federal government after the remarkable success of the Matildas at the Women’s World Cup.

But the lack of football-centric funding and seemingly zero progress into a home of football for the Socceroos might appear discouraging to Arnold.

Central Coast Mariners boss Nick Montgomery is also on the list of reported candidates.

Other potential targets include Celtic club legends Neil Lennon and Scott Brown.

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