Crook quits Sydney FC

Ian Crook will step down as Sydney FC coach after a disastrous start to the current season. He will be replaced by Steve Corica in the interim as Sydney FC search for a new full-time manager.

Ian Crook will step down as Sydney FC coach after overseeing the Sky Blues' disastrous start to the 2012/13 Hyundai A-League season.

The Englishman will officially announce his decision at a press conference to be held at Allianz Stadium at 2pm Sunday.

His resignation comes less than 24 hours after Sydney squandered a 2-0 lead in going down 3-2 to Melbourne Victory, after the result Crook engaged in a verbal stoush with angry Sky Blues fans, who were upset at his decisions to substitute both Alessandro Del Piero and Yairo Yau.

The Sky Blues were coming off a 7-2 thrashing at the hands of Central Coast.

The A-League's glamour club has won just two from six under Crook and he felt he could not get the best out of the team.

Crook admitted he had been thinking about his position for the last month after feeling role had become a burden, affecting his health and family life.

“I-ve decided to stand down as Head Coach of Sydney FC,” Crook said. “It-s something I-ve been thinking about for a few weeks now. I love coaching and I love this club but the head coach role is just not for me.

“I always said that if the role started to affect me personally or my family or my ability to sleep at night I would make a change and that was happening so I wanted to do the right thing by the club.

“This is a great club and the Head Coach role is a fantastic job but it just wasn-t for me. It has been a privilege to coach Sydney FC and I don-t regret it for a second but I just felt it was the right thing to allow someone else to take over now so they have time.”

The decision shocked Pignata and Cole, who asked Crook to reconsider at a meeting this morning, before the trio addressed the football staff and the playing group.

“It was a shock and it is disappointing. Gary Cole and I tried to talk him out of it this morning but we have to respect Ian-s decision and move forward as a club,” Pignata said. “Ian is a good coach and a good man and everyone at Sydney FC is convinced he was the right man to coach this club.

“We respect the fact that he has decided it was not the right role for him but we want Ian to stay involved at Sydney FC in a development or youth role.”

Assistant Steve Corica will step in as caretaker while the search for a new full-time coach begins.