Wellington Phoenix omit trio for lack of professionalism despite struggles

Three Wellington Phoenix players have been axed from this week's squad for a lack of professionalism but the A-League club are keeping quiet about the details.

Midfielder Roly Bonevacia and defenders Tom Doyle and Ryan Lowry won't be on the flight to Brisbane for Saturday's game against the Roar as punishment for breaching the struggling team's internal protocols.

The trio didn't train on Friday and despite being repeatedly pressed, co-coach Des Buckingham wouldn't say why.

He revealed the breach occurred some time after the shattering 5-1 home loss to Melbourne City last Saturday, which all three players played in, and before a team meeting on Tuesday in which a number of home truths were aired.

He said the suspended trio had done nothing illegal and there hadn't been any complaint from a third party.

"It's the standards we've set as staff that we expect players to follow at this football club. Those three haven't met those standards," Buckingham said.

"We've decided it wasn't professional and wasn't a good look for this football club.

"It's more disappointing after what was a very poor scoreline for us last week. Everyone left that stadium in a very bad way, very down."

Buckingham says the trio's reaction to the suspension was "mixed," however he denied there was any dissension among those players or others in the squad.

It is still to be decided if the suspension will continue beyond this week and Buckingham says discussions will be held into whether All Whites international Doyle remains in the team's player leadership group.

Bonevacia has been linked to a move to other A-League clubs.

He will miss his first game of the season and will be sorely missed, with midfielders Michael McGlinchey (knee injury) and Gui Finkler (parental leave) both unavailable.

Wellington are winless in their last five games, conceding 14 goals.

"Not at any point have we lost control of the dressing room," Buckingham said in response to the suggestion.

He hopes this week's sanctions can have a positive effect, noting a lift in training with the realisation that the club's reputation is on the line.

"It's a professional football club and we've got fans paying good money to come watch this team, so it's important that every single player recognises their own responsibilities."