John van 't Schip ready to take charge

Melbourne Heart will go back to the future and appoint John Van 't Schip, its inaugural coach, as its temporary boss to the end of the season following its sacking of John Aloisi.

Hayden Foxe, Aloisi's assistant, has also parted company with the club.

Chairman Peter Sidwell on Sunday morning said negotiations were going on with the Dutchman for him to take charge once again, and he was optimistic that the former Netherlands international would be in charge for the visit to Central Coast Mariners next weekend.

Van 't Schip has been involved on the fringes of team matters this season as he holds a technical advisory role with the club, although he has not been based full time in Melbourne.

''The Melbourne Heart board met on Saturday afternoon and decided we would terminate John Aloisi's tenure here at the club,'' Sidwell said.

''Scott (CEO Scott Munn) and I then met with John at about 6pm. It's a difficult decision to terminate one of our favourite sons, but it was done with the best interests of the club going forward.

''Ultimately success on the park is the major measure of a club. We are very clearly not having that.

''We have had discussions with JVS. We are yet to confirm his availablity and the timing of that availability. He is the number one choice subject to his availability,'' Sidwell told reporters.

The chairman said he hoped that agreement with Van 't Schip could be struck ''within 48 hours''.

Sidwell was adamant that Van 't Schip's presence in the background had not been a hindrance to Aloisi and affected his performance in the job.

''We all bear responsibility top to bottom. We have all got some blood on our hands regarding this,'' said Sidwell, suggesting that all involved with the club had to ask themselves did they give Aloisi sufficient support and do enough in all facets of the game to give him a chance to succeed.

Sidwell said it had only been on Saturday that the board sat down as a group to ask itself whether the poor run of results and damage it was going to the club necessitated a change of direction at the top.

They contacted the coach between 3.30 and 4pm on Saturday afternoon and called him to a 5.30 meeting at which they delivered the bad news, he explained.

Heart is negotiating with a handful of potential investors for a sale of the club, but that had no bearing on the decision to axe the coach, Sidwell said, and none of the potential buyers was involved in the decision.

The chairman said he had been happy Heart had made the right decision to appoint such an inexperienced coach as Aloisi at the time they did even though there were other, more experienced candidates around.

''We took a judgment at the time on the best advice we had at the time. ''

Sidwell confirmed once again that negotiations for a sale were taking place, but also said that the club did not have to be sold.

''Our board and shareholders can continue to support this club forever. We have absolute commitment from two or three of our wealthy shareholders, and we have had more than one offer (to buy). ''

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