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Parramatta Eels Club release findings of Football Department Review

Dear Members,

I am writing to you to update you all on the findings of our Football Department Review, conducted by independent consultant, Shane McCurry.

The scope of the review which was overseen by the Board was to examine all aspects of our Football Department including:
Culture, Governance & Leadership
Player Program & Support
Football Operations & Compliance.
Coaching (NRL & Pathways).
Structure & Resourcing.
Recruitment & Roster Management.
Retention & Development.
Wellbeing (Welfare) & Education.
High Performance, Medical, Conditioning & Sports Science.
Facilities & Infrastructure.
Junior/Representative Programs.
Staff Development

The process involved over 160 interviews with a broad cross section of our Football Club including coaches, players, staff, senior management and the Board as well as former coaches, players and administrators. In the interests of understanding the characteristics of high performing sporting environments across a range of professional sports, additional administrators, coaches, CEOs, General Managers of Football and past players were also interviewed.

The review had been a thorough and extensive process and provides us with a roadmap to help drive sustained performance going forward.

Our entire Club was disappointed for our Members and fans in 2018, and we realised that we needed to re-assess how we were doing things.

The broader purpose and rationale for conducting this project was to assess ourselves against best practise sporting organisations to ensure that, going forward, the Club has appropriate personnel, systems, resources, processes and structures in place to deliver sustainable on-field success at the NRL level.

We are committed to delivering success for our Members and fans and we believe the review and the recommendations out of the review give us the best opportunity to do that.

The review identified a number of areas of improvement as well as a number of areas where we are doing well.

The major recommendations which the Board has endorsed include:

An increased investment in the Football Department to ensure additional resources are placed into the coaching and development of our playing group at both NRL and Junior Representative levels.

Cultural Foundations:
As part of our Strategic Plan, we are undertaking a review of the Club’s Cultural Foundations. This important piece of work will be facilitated by Shane McCurry and will involve all staff and players in the Club.

Development System:
A confirmation that the Parramatta Eels is a Development Club; with a large and thriving Parramatta Junior League and a good Junior Representative Program, our Club has ambitions to develop elite, young players through to our NRL squad.

To ensure we have the optimum pathways system, we have made the decision to have our own Parramatta branded ISP / 2nd Grade team in 2020; we have the 2019 season to run in our joint venture with the Wentworthville Magpies and we certainly value this relationship.

Our Junior Representative Program (Under 20’s, Under 18’s, Under 16’s, Tarsha Gale Girls, Academies) will also be provided with a full-time Coaching Coordinator to ensure a consistency of football philosophy across the entire Club.

Additional specialist coaching resources will be engaged;
Expanded High Performance Unit;
Expanded leadership program facilitated by an external third party for coaches and players.

General Manager of Football:
The Club has appointed Mark O’Neill as General Manager of Football to assume management responsibilities of the Football Department; this appointment will enable our Head Coach, Brad Arthur, to focus on coaching and to provide an experienced resource to help develop and execute a best-practice, high performance football strategy.

We will restructure our Recruitment Department and commence a search for a new Head of Recruitment. We will establish a Player Roster Management Committee in order to develop a more sophisticated approach to player roster management for both our NRL & Development squads. A further analysis will be conducted by the General Manager of Football into the List Management operations. Peter Sharp will remain a valuable member of our recruitment team.

Wellbeing & Education:
In an NRL first, we will appoint a full-time resource dedicated to our large Pasifika & Indigenous playing groups in the Parramatta District & broader Rugby League community. Additionally, we will create a new role responsible for NRL Player Welfare, Safety and Integrity.

Facilities and Infrastructure:
We are working on plans to upgrade our existing facilities at the Old Saleyards. Over the longer term and as part of our new Strategic Plan, the Club will establish a project team focused on delivering our longer term vision for a Centre of Excellence for our playing, coaching and office staff in five years.

The above recommendations will now form part of a performance framework that will be reviewed, modified and challenged on an ongoing basis to ensure we provide an elite performance environment for our players, coaches and staff.

We will certainly keep you updated with the progress and changes regarding our Football Department.

We thank you for your ongoing support of the Parramatta Eels.

Bernie Gurr
Chief Executive Officer
Parramatta National Rugby League Club Pty Limited

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Given this is a summary, the purpose isn't to highlight the negatives but they're fairly easy to point out:

1. Recruitment system poor - Replacing the recruitment manager

2. Overlooked junior development - Restructure of juniors with appointment of a full time coordinator

3. Wenty partnership didn't work - Parramatta reserve grade side as of 2020

4. Not top notch facilities - Centre of excellence in five years

5. High performance lacked - Increase high performance unit capabilities

6. Lack of GMF - GMF appointed

If you can't see the negatives being addressed then you're either being lazy or you're not thinking critically enough. They are not going to highlight in yellow highlighter what the negatives are. The report identified areas they needed to fix and they have taken action to fix them. If they simply listed negatives in this summary I'd be concerned they hadn't actually addressed them.

Is the problem that they've been very thorough with their review and you haven't been given the opportunity to lay the boot into the club again so you just sit back and claim all of this is basic and should've been done already?

Enough of your explaining for the club and non stop club defence, you are never right mate and youre imo very naive, you are the absolute last person id listen too in regards to anything football related, lol.

Keep your naive nonsense for the dopes.

You think i cant see exactly whats going on in this report super? you love to talk to everybody like they are absolutely stupid, you point out the most obvious shit as though the person you are talking to is stupid and needs you to point the basics out, you are very insulting and arrogant in your tone super and you do it all the time.

The only role you know here chasing people around and correcting them like you are an official club spokesman when in reality you are an absolute nuffy at the club who knows SFA about anything, mate dont bother with me, find somebody as naive as yourself to converse with and chase around trying to correct.

Funny thing is you are never correct about anything and havnt been the entire time ive watched you lol.

Why should anybody in their right mind listen to you?

Super, the most discerning thing about this blog is how you are trying to reason with blokes that have the intelligence of a thrice used tampon. 

Honestly mate, don’t waste your time.

lol, how is that discerning?

Have to agree with you snake. This shit shoulda been dealt with long ago and I feel kinda insulted by these findings. We all knew what had to be done. Even us dopes! Can’t help but think Bernie is just putting something out there to make us feel better about our failures as a club. I’m pretty embarrassed by this, even more so than prior to the review. Pull your finger out and do something not just attempt to tell us what we want to hear.

So the fact the this should have been dealt with ages ago, means it shouldn't be dealt with now? What do you want ffs? Is it not what you wanted and all the thing supposedly you suggested? Why can't you negative wizards for once say.... Well this will make a difference & look forward to what lays ahead? Instead you all pump your chest & again tell the world how f&$king perfect you all are by pointing all the shit you have mentioned in the past. Your better than that Snake!


Even us dopes!

That's your words Nidge.....you can do better than that!

Thought you’d pick up the tongue in cheek pops. Guess I was wrong.

Spot on Tin Tin, I know it's a week late responding but been busy. You are 100% correct, a sort of damned if you do, damned if you don't. I personally think that the phuktards have put themselves in a corner as far as the review is concerned and haven't got the balls to admit when they are wrong they continue with this negativity despite knowing full well the review findings were what they wanted all along.


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