Tah-rah Mark Rudan, in the end you're just another Anthony Hudson in disguise.
The Phoenix coach, lauded in some quarters (those being mostly Wellington), might be leading his team into the playoffs for the first time in 4 years tonight but he'll also be leaving the franchise in the same parlous state he found it.
And that's with no coach, just seven players signed for next year and a miserable atmosphere around the place caused by yet another fly-by-nighter fast-talking wide-boy who's used the sport in this country for nothing other than his own selfish self-interest.
No, I don't buy Rudan's well-rehearsed rhetoric much like I never believed Hudson's when he was All Whites coach either.
Former national coach and all-round football legend Kevin Fallon got it exactly right when describing Hudson as a 100% pretender in "tight pants and pointy shoes".
Rudan is Hudson's equivalent on a club level.
All those crocodile tears about needing/wanting/having to go back to his family in Sydney are as flimsy as the team's effort away at Perth last weekend. Truth is it just doesn't bear scrutiny. Because why, if he's missing them all so much by being in Wellington, has he taken a new job not in Sydney but (another long flight away) in Melbourne?
Rudan has been an on-field success for the 'Nix, don't get me wrong. He's taken the team from 9th last year to 6th and a playoff spot. But let's not anoint a guy who's real motivation has always been to improve his own CV and use the time here to wang himself a "new and better" job - just like Hudson did.
In terms of the Phoenix most of the blame must lie with the owners who have zero desire to actually keep this franchise going and have spent most the last couple of years trying to flog it off.
Chairman Rob Morrison, despite all his self-congratulatory bluster when first acquiring the club, has been a total disappointment in charge lacking any of the business acumen or football nouse actually needed. His "contribution" will be as quickly forgotten as Darije Kalezic was.
The sooner Morrison does a "Rudan" and gets gone the better.
And as for that fake Antony Hudson? He's just been sacked by the Colorado Rapids after 43 games in charge for just 8 paltry wins. Knowing the way Rob Morrison works, expect him to be announced though as Rudan's replacement quicker then you can say "bring back Ricki Herbert"!