Valkanis concentrating ‘on the now’ as Reds loom

Melbourne City interim coach Michael Valkanis has claimed he’s been given no timeline regarding when John van ‘t Schip’s permanent replacement will be appointed.

Van ‘t Schip’s former assistant took over as City boss last week after the Dutchman resigned to return to the Netherlands to be with his ailing father.

While City have been linked with various coaches since Van ‘t Schip’s departure, Valkanis insists he has no idea when the club expects to decide on a new head coach.

Until then, the former centre-back has a simple philosophy.

“Live the now like we all should in our lives – live the now,” Valkanis said on Wednesday.

“Don’t dwell in the past, don’t look too far into the future – the now.”

Valkanis isn’t worried about the speculation surrounding City’s vacant coaching position, arguing that while it’s good for the game that there’s so much discussion, he is too busy with day-to-day coaching to worry about it.

Next up for Valkanis and his players is a trip to the 42-year-old’s former club Adelaide United.

“A year ago I would not in my life have thought I’d be going back coaching against Adelaide United as the head coach,” he said.

Ivan Franjic celebrates his goal against the Wanderers with City interim coach Michael Valkanis.

Valkanis swapped the Hyundai A-League championship winnders for City before the start of the season and, although the Reds have struggled in the defence of their premiership-championship double, he remains wary of their strengths.

“I know the style and I know what they’re going to do, there’s no doubt about it but they’re in a difficult spot and they’re very dangerous,” he said.

“So we can’t think that it’s going to be an easy game just because the table says they’re on the bottom of the ladder. They’re a team that’s been very unlucky, that’s been playing very good football and they’re going to play a grand final tomorrow.

“I’m sure behind the scenes that they’ll be talking about tomorrow as do-or-die.”

With Michael Jakobsen and Osama Malik having made their respective returns from injury in last week’s 1-0 win over Western Sydney Wanderers, City have close to a full squad to choose from for Thursday night’s match.

Neil Kilkenny is one on the unavailable list due to suspension and Valkanis is planning to use Malik in his place.