|By DAN COLASIMONE
Brisbane Roar captain Matt Smith says the decision to replace coach Rado Vidosic with Mike Mulvey came as a surprise to the players, but some kind of action was required to turn the club's season around.
Mulvey was installed as interim coach of the Roar on Tuesday, charged with turning the club's ailing on-field fortunes around.
The reigning A-League champions have slumped to second-last place on the table following a disastrous opening 11 rounds of the season, culminating in the demotion of Vidosic to the role of technical director.
"It came as a bit of a shock to be honest, but I think the players need to be a bit responsible as well," Smith said of Mulvey's appointment.
"But there's no point looking back on what we've done, it's all about looking forward to the future because we're not in the position that we want to be.
"We [the players] have to be held accountable, but we have the opportunity to now turn it around," he said.
Smith pointed out that, although he and the other players felt for Vidosic, there was little time for them to focus on anything other than Friday's match against Perth Glory.
"It's the same with players, and the same with coaches; as a player if you're no longer required, it's tough, and we certainly feel for Rado but we don't have much time to focus on other things now. We literally have a game tomorrow night so that's the most important thing for us," he said.
"These things are never nice no matter what time you do it; at the start of the year, at end of the year, during the year, but the decision was made, and that comes down from the club.
"Rado has been a massive part of Brisbane Roar and he always will be a massive part of Brisbane Roar."
On new coach Mulvey, Smith said any changes he brought would begin to become apparent after a brief settling-in period.
"Mike's come in and he's been very enthusiastic and motivated and he's certainly driven, and that's definitely going to be portrayed within the playing group," Smith said.
"We haven't sat down too much. It's all about focussing on a few things that Mike wants us to do for the game on Friday night and then implementing them over the next couple of the weeks.
"We'll probably get a clearer picture or a more definitive style of football that Mike wants to play."
Mulvey told reporters that Vidosic would not be involved with the first team initially, but said the two had already met to discuss football matters.
"We sat down and spoke for about 40 minutes," Mulvey said.
"It was straight into football. We were discussing players, we were discussing videos and DVDs – he's got a great knowledge with regards to that side of the game.
"He was a great gentleman and it was a great chat. One thing that stood out to me is that he's absolutely determined for the club to be successful."