Matildas defender Alanna Kennedy has said dealing with coach Alen Stajcic’s exit has been “extremely difficult”.
The Matildas boss was controversially sacked following a series of internal reviews and confidential player surveys.
Kennedy has come out in defence of Stajcic, praising his influence on her career.
“He’s the leader of the team and it’s his guidance that we’re under,” Kennedy told FOX Sports.
“We all looked up to him and had a lot of respect for him.
“I’ve personally known him for a very long time.
“He’s been a great influence on my career and I have a lot of respect for him.
“It’s obviously a very sad time for him.”
Despite the difficult times, Kennedy says the team’s focus is solely on the World Cup.
“We don’t have much time now before the World Cup and that’s where our focus is,” the Matildas defender said.
“We’re very united and we’re looking forward to making our mark on that tournament.
“It’s been difficult.
“It’s been hard, I’m not going to lie, it’s been extremely difficult but I think the thing that is always a constant with our team is the solidarity and the unity that we have.
“If there was a team to sort of get back on track and be able to live out those goals, it’s the Matildas and I wouldn’t want to do it with any other girls.”
Kennedy says the team is hoping to know who will lead their side within the next couple of weeks.