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May 14, 2012

Crook wants to bring bling back to Syd FC

Sydney FC's newly unveiled head coach, Ian Crook, says he wants to bring the `bling' back to the A-League club.

Once dubbed Bling FC, the Sky Blues have lost their lustre and Crook thinks it's time for Sydney to reclaim their title as the glamour club.

The Sky Blues on Monday ended their long search for a head coach with Crook's elevation from youth coach to the senior job on a two-year deal.

This now allows the focus to shift to the much-needed recruitment of up to seven players with chairman Scott Barlow saying there was enough money at the club, now owned by his father-in-law, Russian billionaire David Traktovenko.

With three spots available for overseas players, Crooke feels the addition of some star quality to attract fans is vital, especially with imminent cross-town rivals west Sydney also vying for supporters.

He says his priority would be to bolster the forward pack particularly with the loss of Brazilian striker Bruno Cazarine.

"This club has been blessed in times with some real crowd pleasers - Dwight (Yorke) was a crowd pleaser, even David Carney and then we had Juninho." Crooke said.

"So I think it's important that who we bring in needs to fit into a culture that we want to develop, but they need to have a little bit of flair where it will actually get people in here.

"We definitely need to have something that's going to bring back a bit of excitement."

When asked if he wanted to bring the bling back to the club he said:

"Yeah I have no problem with that and if I live to regret that then not an issue at all.

"This club had this cocky kind of mentality from day one where everybody else wanted to knock it off and Sydney, just by having that name, should have that character."

Crook's promotion comes after Sydney pursued and missed out on top coaching targets Graham Arnold and Tony Popovic.

But Crook, who admitted he only considered going for the job when it appeared Arnold was out of the running, said he had no problem being further down the list of candidates.

"You start hearing little things that it's (Arnold's signing) going to happen, it's not going to happen.

"I just sat there thinking to myself `I wonder if I could do this?'

"Then you just have to have the guts to put your hand up and thankfully for me they've decided to go that way.

"I know Arnie was first choice, and that's alright, I'll give him that one."

After two disappointing seasons the heat will be on Crook to restore the two-time championship winning club to the top of the league with Barlow saying the benchmark was to secure an Asian Champions League spot, which requires a top-three finish.

Crook confirmed Steve Corica will remain assistant coach with Zeljko Kalac staying on as goalkeeping coach.

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