Popovic explains dramatic exit from Western Sydney Wanderers

Tony Popovic said his bombshell departure from Western Sydney Wanderers is a calculated risk but one his instinct says is right.

As he prepares for a shock new challenge in the Turkish Super League,

Popovic, 44, and an ashen faced Wanderrers CEO John Tsatsimas fronted at a hastily arranged press conference at Wanderers HQ on Sunday afternoon.

It was to announce the coach was leaving to pursue his overseas opportunity.

Tony Popovic

Popovic revealed he’d only had discussions wihth this new club on Saturday night.

And by Sunday morning had informed Tsatsimas and the club that he was leaving only seven days before the new A-League season. .

The coach revealed things had moved so swiftly, he’d not even spoken to his players.

“Yes, the timing isn’t ideal,” Popovic conceded.

“Today is a very difficult day to announce my departure as head coach.

Tony Popovic has resigned as coach of Western Sydney Wanderers

“It’s to pursue an opportunity in Europe. I’ve always had the ambition to coach overseas.

"And I’ve had opportunities in Asia but it’s Europe where I’ve always wanted to go.

“The club is well aware of that. The timing’s certainly not great. But you don’t plan these things.

“It’s my opportunity to get my foot in the door in Europe in a big competition. And that’s where I’d like to take my next challenge.”

Popovic added his decision was a calculated risk and one that he took on "instinct", similar to his decision to leave Crystal Palace and take up the job at then new A-League club Western Sydney Wanderers in 2012.

Asked whether he’d want to stay in Turkey if things didn’t work out with Karabukspor, his new club, and Popovic had a simple, direct answer.

“I wouldn’t be going there if I didn’t believe I could make an impact.”

Karabukspor are third bottom of the Turkish Super League.