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Luiz Felipe-Scolari says he is interested in coaching the Socceroos

21:44 GMT 13/12/2017
Luiz Felipe-Scolari
The Brazilian coach is high on the FFA shortlist but appears only to be keen for a long-term role beyond next year's showpiece

World Cup-winning coach Luiz Felipe Scolari has declared his interest in taking Australia to World Cup Russia 2018.

A long list of candidates have put their hand up for the vacant job made open by Ange Postecoglou's departure including former Germany and USA coach Jurgen Klinsmann, recently sacked Serbian manager Slavoljub Muslin and former England manager Sven-Goran Eriksson.

Now the Socceroos have set their sights on the Brazilian tactician Scolari with the Football Federation Australia making contact after he recently ended a two-and-a-half year stint with Chinese Super League side Guangzhou Evergrande.

"I am one of the names (the FFA) spoke with ... to see if I was interested in taking them to the World Cup," Scolari told Reuters.

"I don't intend in just taking a team to the World Cup.

"I intend on leading a team with an organised project for one or two years. But I am interested."

The former Chelsea manager led Brazil to World Cup glory in 2002 and returned to the head job of the passionate football nation for the 2014 tournament, exiting on a shattering 7-1 loss on home soil to Germany.

FFA chief executive David Gallop has previously said an Australian coach would be preferable, and Newcastle Jets coach Ernie Merrick backed his call on Monday.

''The Socceroos job should go to an Australian coach," Merrick said.

"Graham Arnold or Tony Popovic would be the front two.

"The idea of going overseas again, I just don't understand that.

"Those two know the players, they know the sporting culture, and I'd love to see one of those two given the job."

The FFA has said an announcement on a new coach would be made next year - before the Socceroos play their next match in the March international window.