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Premier League

Melton won't rush Sydney FC's new coach

Sydney FC chief executive Dirk Melton will stick to structure while speculation over the A-League club's next coach continues to grow.

Central Coast coach Graham Arnold, Chelsea great Gianfranco Zola, and former Sky Blues Dwight Yorke and Benito Carbone headline a list of potential candidates for the post which will be vacated by Vitezslav Lavicka at season's end.

However the club's recruitment process is at a relatively early stage.

As such, Melton's not yet ready to sound out the likes of ex-Manchester United star Yorke, who has voiced his desire to return to mentor the side he won the inaugural A-League grand final with.

"The people that have been putting their hand up to want to coach this team, and those who are displaying interest through various forums - we feel quite honoured," Melton said on Tuesday.

"(But) first we've got to aggregate all the lists.

"We can't go about automatically running off and engaging people without a structure.

"... We're just being respectful. There are some names coming through, where it's really important that we are respectful of that.

"They may not necessarily be the right person for where we want to take the club but because of their position in the game, we need to make sure that they're treated with the upmost respect and courtesy."

Melton didn't nominate a hard and fast deadline for appointing Lavicka's successor, but said the club would "like to have it pretty close before the season ends."

This will be one of Melton's most scrutinised pieces of work since becoming CEO of the Sky Blues in June.

Early indicators suggest he's made a positive start to his tenure.

"I like to talk in facts. I've commissioned a significant amount of research to get an understanding of where we're at.

"The first components of that have come through, which highlight (the club's position) relative to more than eight months ago.

"We're considered more professional now by our stakeholders, we're considered more community focused ... and we're communicating better, both with our fans and with the media.

"We've canvassed a lot of people, including our fans, on this piece of research and they've said there's been a significant shift.

"That's a positive start but we've got a long way to go."

Melton was joined by beyondblue's Morris Iemma and Jeff Kennett to announce the club's new partnership with the charity, which will be underlined by Sydney FC and Melbourne Victory playing for the beyondblue Cup on March 10.

Former Sydney FC player Dez Giraldi spoke of his own battles with anxiety, and the challenge of raising mental health awareness within the community.


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