Mehmet: I'm the boss

Embattled Melbourne Victory coach Mehmet Durakovic issued an unequivocal defence of his position on Friday, stating: "I am the boss of this football club".

Embattled Melbourne Victory coach Mehmet Durakovic issued an unequivocal defence of his position on Friday, stating: "I am the boss of this football club".

Durakovic has surely endured his most difficult week yet since inheriting the top job at the two-time Hyundai A-League champions.

Victory have struggled to live up to their billing in seven matches played so far this season, and gave up a two-goal lead to draw 2-2 at home to the 10 men of Perth Glory last Sunday.

Francis Awaritefe quit his role as director of football on Tuesday after just six months in the position.

It then emerged marquee signing Harry Kewell had split with long-term manager Bernie Mandic.

Kewell reportedly agreed to take on former Serie A star Abel Balbo as a personal mentor and individual coach.

News of the relationship with Balbo, who was previously believed to be in contention for a technical role at Victory, further undermined Durakovic's position.

In a new twist on Friday, sources allegedly close to Kewell have denied any such mentoring agreement exists with the Argentine.

In the face of this turmoil, and with what has been billed as a must-win clash against bottom side Gold Coast United looming on Sunday, Durakovic insisted he remained the man in charge at AAMI Park.

"I am the boss of this football club," he said.

"The buck stops with me. Kevin Muscat is my assistant coach and so is Steve Mautone. And we have known each other since day one."

"But I call the shots here and I'm the boss."

"Since we started the pre-season and at the start of the season, the structure I've put in place is still there and the players take directions from me."

After scoring six goals and picking up just one win so far, Durakovic knows the only way the rumours of unrest will disappear is if the team start performing.

"We are a very big club, no doubt about that," he said.

"The supporters, the fans, demand success. I demand success."

"And we'll be trying to do everything right ... this week."

"We've been working really, really hard on the pitch to get our consistency going."

"We need to get our team shape right and hopefully we can put the ball in the back of the net and get going in this week's game."

"We need to be successful, simple as that. We need results. But like I said, we've only lost one game. And we'll try and do whatever we can to get results this week against Gold Coast. "

Allegedly, Durakovic barely survived a mid-week boardroom vote on his future, but the man himself said there had been no crisis talks, and was confident he had the full backing of the entire club.

"We normally have chats nearly every day, but no, we haven't had a board meeting," he said regarding his relationship with the club's senior officials.

"I've got the full support of the players, the board, (and) the coaching staff are fantastic."

"There is pressure. But I'm big enough, I'll cop it on the chin and hopefully we'll just have to work really, really hard on the pitch."

While the intrigue about Kewell's supposed relationship with Balbo is likely to continue, as far as Durakovic is concerned, the ex-Roma and Udinese favourite has no influence on proceedings inside the club.

"Balbo has absolutely nothing to with Melbourne Victory," he said.

"He has no involvement with the club. So let me make that clear."

"I'm the boss of this club and everyone takes direction from me. As for Balbo, that's Harry's prerogative, but he has nothing to do with the club whatsoever. No involvement whatsoever."