Socceroos coach Graham Arnold says he is not responsible for the actions of four Australian under-23 players who are being investigated by the FFA following an incident in Cambodia earlier this year that happened under his watch.
The Olyroos were in Phnom Penh at the end of March playing in a qualifying tournament for next year’s Olympics and a complaint was made against the players regarding the final night of their trip.
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“Sometimes people take their own responsibility,” said Graham, when asked if he felt responsible for the unspecified incident.
The players involved are Lachlan Wales, Nathaniel Atkinson, Brandon Wilson and Riley McGree, who have been asked to “show cause” to the FFA for their alleged behaviour.
It means the players now have the opportunity to explain their actions to the governing body.
The FFA said the reason the independent investigation took so long to complete was due to its “complexity”.
Despite the show cause notices being issued by the board on October 3, the FFA did not confirm the investigation until after an ABC report was published on Wednesday morning.
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Arnold was the Olyroos coach at the time but would not confirm if he was out with players on the night of the incident.
“In March this year I travelled to Cambodia as the head coach of the under-23 national team. After returning to Australia I was made aware of a complaint against some of our players after an incident on the final night of our stay,” Arnold read in a statement.
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“The alleged misbehaviour has been the subject of a thorough investigation. I have always and always will make it very clear to my staff and my players of my expectations of them in camp. They are the public face of football in this country and abroad and with that comes added responsibility. “We now need to ensure the individuals concerned are given the opportunity to participate in a fair process as required under the FFA’s disciplinary regulations.” McGree is the captain on the Olyroos and recently signed a three-year contract with Adelaide United.