Brisbane Roar announce new Liberty A-League head coach: Full details

Central Coast Mariners v Brisbane Roar - Highlights | Liberty A-League 2023-23 | Round 04

Brisbane Roar have moved swiftly to fill the vacancy at the helm of their Liberty A-League side, appointing former Roar and Melbourne City assistant Alex Smith to replace Garrath McPherson.

Less than a day after announcing McPherson’s departure, with his Roar side fourth on the league table after four games, Smith was unveiled in his place with the club promising to hold the team to “high expectations”.

Smith, whose playing career included spells with Wellington Phoenix and Gold Coast United as well as stints in the US and Malaysia, was previously at NPL side Peninsula Power where he was head of women’s football.

The 38-year-old spent almost two years as full-time assistant to Rado Vidosic at Melbourne City’s Liberty A-League side as well as coaching the boys’ academy teams, but takes over at the Roar with immediate effect.

“The club is in a period of significant change, but with that change comes a huge amount of opportunity and excitement,” said Roar CEO Kaz Patafta.

“Our women’s team are ready to take their football to the next level and require the right leadership and cultural support to achieve that.   

“Alex brings incredible energy and an enormous breadth of experience to the club. His deep understanding of positive cultural and strategic leadership will enable the women’s team to thrive and deliver on-field success.” 

“Our leadership team deeply cares about our women’s team and holds them to high expectations. We are focused on giving them the best resources, leadership and support to enable success and challenge to win the league. We have no doubt that Alex is the right person to lead this incredible Brisbane Roar Women’s team on this journey and into the future,” added Patafta.

English-born but Texas-raised, Smith had played college football in the US and briefly at non-league level in the UK before retiring at 21 – only to rediscover his love for the game on a holiday to Australia.

He previously spent time at Brisbane Roar in various coaching roles after ending his playing career with Olympic FC under Ben Cahn, now the Roar Academy Director.

Smith described himself as “extremely passionate about women’s football” and added: “I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to join Brisbane Roar and to support this immensely talented and eager group of women on their journey to success.”