Roar CEO explains coach’s dismissal in open letter to fans: Read the statement here

Brisbane Roar will host Western United at Ballymore Stadium this weekend in what is new Brisbane Roar coach Alex Smith’s first game.

Brisbane Roar chief executive Kaz Patafta has sent an open letter to the club’s members addressing the dismissal of Liberty A-League coach Garrath McPherson.

McPherson was dismissed only four games into the season, with the Roar sitting in fourth place on the standings after two wins, one draw and one defeat.

He had held the role for the last two seasons, after taking over at the start of the 2021-22 campaign following an extended period as an assistant coach.

Roar missed finals in both seasons, finishing in sixth and ninth place.

He was replaced by former Alex Smith, who previously worked as an assistant for Brisbane and Melbourne City’s women’s sides.

READ: Roar announce shock departure of head coach as club aims for ‘improvements across the board’

This is the statement, in full:

To our dedicated Brisbane Roar FC members and fans,

I hope you enjoyed last weekend’s round against Central Coast Mariners. It was certainly a thrilling day that saw our women’s team draw and our men’s team deliver victory. 

As you know, our club is on a journey to reshape and rebuild. During this period of change, people will have differing views and opinions, and that’s ok. To help bring you along on this journey with us, I remain committed to being transparent and honest. On that, I would like to share some updates with you.   

This week we announced a new coach for our A-League Women’s Team – Alex Smith – and announced the departure of Garrath McPherson. 

There are a few reasons for this decision that I’d like to share with you. 

First, the focus and expectations that myself, Zac and the club have directed toward our women’s team is higher than it’s ever been. We truly believe that this is a team of exceptional players who have the ability to challenge for the A-Leagues title. I believe that under the right guidance, leadership and environment we have the right players who now have the support to perform at their highest potential. 

Second, it became clear in recent months that we, as new management, were seeking a higher level of strategic expertise and cultural support for our A Leagues Women’s program. Our expectations of standards had to be improved and reenergised. I firmly believe that Alex will impart his incredible energy, deep understanding of positive cultural and strategic leadership to this team to take them to the next level and deliver on-field success.

It is important to us to recognise as a club and once again thank Garrath for his dedication and contribution to Brisbane Roar and wish him every success in the future. Garrath is an exceptional coach and person. He has without question played a crucial role in creating the foundations of success for this team over the past 3 years.”

Smith’s first game in charge comes this Sunday as Brisbane plays host to Western United at Ballymore Stadium.