Kisnorbo focused on All Stars, not possible ALM return

Former Melbourne City boss Patrick Kisnorbo is among the possible targets for Western Sydney Wanderers as they seek a replacement for departed boss Marko Rudan.

PATRICK KISNORBO.
 PATRICK KISNORBO. Picture: Robert Cianflone/Getty Images

A-League Men All Stars coach Patrick Kisnorbo has refused to publicly rule himself in or out of the running for the vacant Western Sydney Wanderers job.

The Wanderers are on the hunt for a new coach following Marko Rudan's departure last week for personal reasons.

Former Melbourne City boss Kisnorbo heads a strong list of free agents with ALM experience, along with ex-Central Coast manager Nick Montgomery.

Melbourne Victory coach Tony Popovic, whose side takes on the Mariners in Saturday's ALM grand final, is yet to agree to a new contract.

Kisnorbo has been out of action since he was sacked by Troyes last November following a disastrous stint at the French club.

Prior to that, the 43-year-old led Melbourne City through a highly-successful era, claiming their breakthrough ALM premiership-championship double in 2020-21 and a second premiership in 2021-22.

Kisnorbo also won an A-League Women championship with City in 2017-18 before becoming an assistant coach to the men's team.

Kisnorbo's ALM resume could make him an attractive proposition for Western Sydney.

But the former Socceroos defender is keeping his cards close to his chest ahead of the All Stars' clash with English Premier League club Newcastle United at Marvel Stadium on Friday night.

"I'm just worrying about the A-League All Stars and that's it," Kisnorbo said on Monday.

"For me, honestly, you know what answer I'm going to give you. I'm just going to concentrate on the game.

"I can't look forward. For me it's just concentrating on what's present and the A-League All Stars is present at the moment.

"It's an opportunity to coach, which I love to do, and I'm very humbled and excited to do that."

Despite a disappointing stint in France, Kisnorbo feels he has grown as a coach since he was last in the ALM.

"I think I can tolerate a lot more ... (there are) tactical things that I've improved on, me as a person I've improved on," he said.

"When you go through difficult times you improve and you learn, and that's what I've done since leaving France."

The All Stars' squad was finalised on Monday and included the addition of five Wellington Phoenix players after their ALM semi-final defeat to Victory.

Bulgarian playmaker Bozhidar Kraev heads the list, while Sydney FC trio Luke Brattan, Rhyan Grant and Jordan Courtney-Perkins were also added following their semi-final loss to the Mariners.

The squad includes seven players aged 23 and under, including Bayern-Munich bound Nestory Irankunda.

"They'll all be involved in some way but if I was them I'd be very excited, and I'm very excited to coach them," Kisnorbo said.

A-LEAGUE MEN ALL STARS SQUAD:

Goalkeepers: Alex Paulsen (Wellington Phoenix), Lawrence Thomas (Western Sydney Wanderers)

Defenders: Kai Trewin (Brisbane Roar/Melbourne City), Jordan Courtney-Perkins (Sydney FC), Rhyan Grant (Sydney FC), Tim Payne (Wellington Phoenix), Scott Wootton (Wellington Phoenix), Marcelo (Western Sydney Wanderers), Ben Garuccio (Western United)

Midfielders: Jay O'Shea (Brisbane Roar), Jake Hollman (Macarthur FC), Tolgay Arslan (Melbourne City), Luke Brattan (Sydney FC), Bozhidar Kraev (Wellington Phoenix), Ben Old (Wellington Phoenix), Angus Thurgate (Newcastle Jets)

Forwards: Nestory Irankunda (Adelaide United), Mathew Leckie (Melbourne City), Apostolos Stamatelopoulos (Newcastle Jets), Adam Taggart (Perth Glory), Nicolas Milanovic (Western Sydney Wanderers).