Was Graham Arnold doomed from the start at Vegalta Sendai?

The Australian may never have stood a chance in Japan after finding it difficult to muster support in his attempts to revive Vegalta Sendai's fortunes
Graham Arnold's brief tenure at Vegalta Sendai may have been doomed from the start after the Australian struggled to achieve consensus at the J-League outfit.

Having guided Central Coast to the A-League title last year, Arnold left the Mariners just over a month into the new season, accepting the top job at Vegalta, a club that finished 13th of 18 teams in the 2013 J-League campaign.

He parted company with the club on Wednesday, after a winless eight-game start to his tenure. Arnold has claimed the decision was mutual, although the club does not appear to see it that way.

"Last night, I had a long discussion with Mr. Arnold," Vegalta CEO Yoichi Shirahata said in a statement.

"Mr. Arnold discussed his points of dissatisfaction with the team and the front office, and suggested potential solutions for the future.

"In the end, I have determined that the only solution capable of returning our team to a new starting point is a managerial change.

"There were risks associated with either of our possible decisions, but we have chosen to change managers and Mr. Arnold has been dismissed."

While the language barrier was always going to be an issue, a source familiar with Arnold's unhappy experience has informed Sportal that wasn't the only problem the ex-Socceroos boss encountered.

Vegalta's reputation as a conservative club calls into question the wisdom of their decision to employ an Australian, with none of their four previous non-Japanese managers lasting longer than a season and a half.

According to the source, the existing backroom staff, including assistant coach Susumu Watanabe, were reluctant to fully embrace Arnold's methods, while the 50-year-old himself is said to be somewhat disappointed with the level of backing and assistance offered to him by the club during what was a major professional and personal upheaval.

Just as significant as any issues behind the scenes were the questionable playing resources at Arnold's disposal.

An injury to experienced defender Makoto Kakuda, who has only made four appearances this season, proved costly, while Brazilian forward Wilson and North Korean Ryang Yong-Gi are among the squad's only other genuine top-tier talents.

Arnold attempted to rectify that issue by bringing in the likes of forward Michael McGlinchey and goalkeeper Danny Vukovic on loan from the Mariners and Perth Glory respectively, while a potential move for Celtic's Tom Rogic, now on loan at Melbourne Victory, was reportedly vetoed by the club's board and director of football.

Watanabe has now assumed control of first-team affairs, charged with earning a first win of the season away to Emperor's Cup holders Yokohama F Marinos on Saturday.

Arnold meanwhile must lick his wounds and perhaps choose his next club more carefully if he is afforded another opportunity to prove himself outside Australia.