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HomeNewsFootball: Patrick Kisnorbo becomes first Australian to coach in French top tier

Football: Patrick Kisnorbo becomes first Australian to coach in French top tier

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Championship-winning Melbourne City coach Patrick Kisnorbo has become the first Australian to get a manager’s job in one of Europe’s “top five” leagues after quitting the club mid-season to join ES Troyes AC in France’s Ligue 1.

Kisnorbo is taking assistant coach Ralph Napoli with him, and Rado Vidosic, City’s A-League Women’s coach, will take over as interim boss of the men’s team.

The move puts former Socceroo Kisnorbo on the same path blazed by Celtic manager Ange Postecoglou, although the Scottish Premiership is not considered in the top five European leagues.

Ligue 1 sits with the English Premier League and top-tier competitions in Spain, Italy and Germany as the top five.

Troyes is currently 13th in the 20-team French league and trumpeted the arrival of Kisnorbo who will be coaching his team against giants of world club football including ladder-leaders Paris Saint Germain.

Kisnorbo was a revelation as a manger after his retirement in 2016, winning five trophies beginning with a youth championship in 2017 and women’s championship in 2018.

He was then assistant coach for the men’s squad before being appointed to the role of head coach in 2020. Kisnorbo had immediate success, leading City to the “double” in his first season in charge, winning both the Premier’s Plate and A-League title, before winning a second consecutive Premiers Plate and overseeing City’s debut AFC Champions League campaign in season 2021/22.

City also made the A-League grand final last season, losing to cross-town rivals Western United.

“We consider ourselves lucky to have been able to hold onto Patrick for so long, and we celebrate what he has achieved at Melbourne City.” club chief executive Brad Rowse said.

“He has been instrumental in establishing our club’s philosophy and methodology in a way that it is now sustainable and can be built upon further.

“Our success has come because we are all committed to the way we approach the game and the resulting ways in which we train and play. That approach is now fundamental to the club’s identity.

“It will be the foundation that Rado and the coaching team will continue to build upon and evolve as we continue the push for silverware.”

Kisnorbo has worked with the likes of Postecoglou, Kevin Muscat and Graham Arnold and leaves with City on top of the A-League ladder with five wins from six games this season.

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