The owner of the Western Australian franchise is considering all options - including sackings - in the wake of an explosive dispute between players and coach last weekTony Sage is prepared to immediately sack a player or coach if it helps put an end to the bitter dispute that has plunged Perth Glory into crisis.
Every Glory coach and player has taken part in crisis talks early this week after an explosive rift between senior players and head coach Alistair Edwards came to a head following Friday night's 2-0 away loss to Melbourne Victory.
Veteran midfielder Jacob Burns was furious with Edwards after being left on the bench. The 35-year-old had just returned from a two-week suspension, and couldn't understand why he wasn't given any game time in a Glory team already missing a host of its best players.
More drastically, there are rumours of an all-out revolt against Edwards, who has been accused of favouring his two sons, Ryan and Cameron, over other players.
The club's owner Sage, who is interstate on business, warned contracts would be torn up should the peace talks fail.
"The good of the game and the club is always paramount in my mind. I wish I was at the meeting today. I want to stamp my authority on this," he told 6PR on Monday night.
"Personalities come and go but the club remains and I don't want the club to be a laughing stock."
Sage is refusing to take sides until club management fully investigates. However, he said the row would never have happened if was in Melbourne for the match.
"Jacob is acting on behalf of three or four of the senior players. As captain, he is the one who went up and had a chat to Alistair to voice concerns. So let's dispel the theory that it is just a one-on-one (dispute).
"That never would have happened in Melbourne if I was there. It never does when I am in the change rooms because I bring a sense of calm, I think.
"Win, lose or draw, I am usually in the dressing room. But I wasn't at the game, I'm not in Perth either, I am in Sydney on business. So that would not have happened and should not have happened.
"If I was there, as soon as something was said, I would have said take this back to the hotel or take it back to Perth and have a team meeting. I would not have allowed it to happen," he said.
Sage admits tension over the recruitment of his sons and the generous match time they have been given is aggravating Glory's senior players.
"That is one of the major problems… It's a perception problem. When he did that at the time I said to him it would be a perception problem and your kids are going to be the one to suffer on this because if we don't win every single game you are going to get criticised.
"What we have to do is find out his reasoning for not giving some of the other players a chance… Find out why he hasn't he played (Adrian) Zahra more or why hasn't he played (Isaka) Cernak at all this season."
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