Forecast looking bleak for Sky Blues manager
FOOTBALL is such a results-driven game that no coach or manager is safe, no matter how experienced they are or successful they've been.
That is why Graham Arnold might just be looking over his shoulder as Sydney FC's campaign starts to unravel.
As the business end of the campaign approaches, two home defeats on the trot for the first time in this A-League season leaves the Sky Blues in danger of missing the playoffs.
But what will worry Arnold more than anything is the performance in the 2-1 defeat to Perth.
His team looked devoid of ideas and struggled to contain the likes of Andy Keogh and Chris Harold, the in-form strikers of the competition.
Time is rapidly running out for Arnold if he wants to start turning things around on the domestic front, and he also needs to start getting things right before the Sky Blues embark on a difficult Asian Champions League campaign.
A few changes of personnel might turn things around, with Arnold saying some players might have already run out of chances.
"We have to be honest, it wasn't good enough," Arnold said of the loss to Perth. "I can only say to all the Sydney FC fans, I'm working longer hours than I have ever worked and I'm more determined than ever to fix this.
"The last month hasn't been good, maybe some players have had too many chances and maybe it's now time for changes.
"It's the same thing - transition to defence… the same players not tracking players and it's killing us.
"It's been looked at, the players have been told, the video has been shown and it continues ... so changes will have to be made."
The loss to the Glory means Sydney is only three points ahead of seventh-placed Perth which has won its past four games.
Something certainly needs to change quickly if Arnold is to get things back on track and satisfy the demanding Sydney FC fans and board.
This is a crucial part of the season, with the derby against Western Sydney Wanderers next week starting a run of five tough games in 15 days.
Sydney then plays Urawa Red Diamonds in its opening ACL match, Melbourne Victory, Chinese power Guangzhou Evergrande and Melbourne City in a period which will define its season.
Arnold will need to get things right, otherwise the season and the Champions League campaign could both be in tatters.
The first thing he needs to do is make his players accountable.
After all, they are the ones who need to up their performances.