Adelaide United interim boss Michael Valkanis won't decide whether to throw his hat into the ring for the club's head coaching job until the end of the season.
Adelaide United interim boss Michael Valkanis won't decide whether to throw his hat into the ring for the club's vacant head coaching job until the end of the season.
The Reds have been without a head coach since John Kosmina resigned in late January.
The resignation stunned Adelaide who are on the verge of their first finals appearance since 2010-11 and left them to promote Kosmina's right-hand man and youth team manager Valkanis at the 11th hour.
United have formed an independent panel consisting of part-owner and board member Bruno Marveggio, AFL club Port Adelaide's and former Liverpool head of fitness and conditioning Darren Burgess, ex-Socceroo Craig Foster and local football icon John Perin, who will searching for the new full-time coach.
But Valkanis, who has discussed the application with the Reds' board and management, is undecided as to whether he will add his resume to the pile.
"I've been spoken to about the process the (search) panel is taking, earlier on when I first took the (interim) job," Valkanis said.
"It doesn't even enter my mind at the moment. The only thing that enters is getting the job done now.
"And that this week's game (away to Wellington) and the rest of the games left in the season because our objective is to be the finals and do well in the finals.
"That's the only thing I control at the moment. The future … that's something we will look into as soon as the season's over."
Valkanis did hint, however, that he was likely to apply for the top job.
"I'm enjoying what I'm doing and I love coaching. It's a passion and you have to be consumed by it and I have no issues with that," Valkanis said.
"Whether the day starts at six in the morning and finishes at six at night, it doesn't matter.
"I love the game, love the club and love being a coach."
In Valkanis' three games in charge, the Reds have won just once but sit comfortably clear in fourth spot and within touching distance of the top two.
Valkanis has already felt the pressure around the collar in the hot seat after being sent off during the Reds' passionate 1-0 win over rivals Melbourne Victory two weeks ago for remonstrating with referee Jarred Gillett.
He was banned for Adelaide's 2-1 defeat to Sydney FC last week as a result of his ejection.
When asked to assess his performance so far this season, Valkanis again preferred to wait until the end of the campaign to provide an answer.
The Reds have not won on the road since November when they defeated Sydney 2-1 at Allianz Stadium and have taken just one point from their following six away matches since that result.
Valkanis will take an extended 16-man squad to face the Phoenix with vice-captain Cassio and forward Evan Kostopoulos in the mix to start on Sunday after returning from suspension and injury respectively while defender Daniel Bowles is the only omission.