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So I think we can all agree that Brad Arthur is under enormous pressure heading into next season. There’s a strong chance that if the Eels start off poorly he will be shown the door. Even if Arthur has a somewhat decent season next year there are still question marks as to whether he’ll receive a new contract heading into 2020 and beyond.
It raises some questions for the club. Do they see Arthur as the long term solution? Do they believe he is the right man to lead us to a Premiership?
If the answer is no then why are we keeping him? If it’s purely to avoid paying him out then we run great risk of missing out on a quality coach.
Can the Eels afford to sit on their heels? A proven coach like Maguire might be available now, but who’s to say he’ll be available in 6-8 months time. Where about to see a lot of movement in the coaching ranks and there’s a definite possibility that we’ll be left to pick up the scraps if we leave it until too late.
No but there will definitely come a point where the cub needs to decide which coach to sign for 2020, whether Arthur, Maguire or someone else. Round 10 sounds about right.
And if Arthur is underperforming and there is no longer any quality coaches left on the market?
There’s always a couple of coaches lurking in the shadows towards the end of the season waiting for a gig.
Of course. Whether or not there are any decent coaches is another story.
Lets hope by then there are more options available than just the likes of John Cartwright, Neil Henry, Trent Barrett, Mary MacGregor etc.
I would not mind Barrett coming in as the halves coach though, he was a good half himself. Could do worse I think as an assistant.
That's why round ten seems right. We would obviously be in discussions with a replacement by then. Round ten (for example) would be the time to pull the trigger.
Most importantly we want to allow enough time to decide whether 2018 was the exception, rather than 2016-17.
Now is the time to make a decision.
We’ve had 6 years worth of evidence and seen enough over that time to conclude what sort of coach he is. Evaluating him purely on a wooden spoon year would be wrong , as would evaluating him purely on 2017. 6 years is long enough .
The problem here isn’t just that we’re delaying rebuilding / accepting mediocrity etc.. it’s that it seems as though the start of 2019 is now the make or break. If he does reasonably well over the first 10 weeks are we prepared to throw out what we’ve seen over the past 6 years? (especially this year which was a massive step back in the wrong direction). If we bomb the first 10 weeks than next year is all about starting afresh in another 12 months time. i’m not sure the club can afford to have back 2 back putrid seasons on any front . The initiative should be taken now , with thought that paying him out will cause less pain than 2 consecutive seasons of fans no giving a flying F.
I don't see us having another putrid season as you put it GW&F, I honestly doubt it very very much indeed.
I would even go as far as to say if things are not good by round 10, or even earlier that BA may actually step down from the head coaches role and become more involved with the Jnr set up and pathways, he has a passion for that and really could be the ideal person for it, he is after all Eels, B&G through and through.
For me he offers more to this club than others possibly could.
colin h**** : Come off it for Christ sake. This is 100% pure guff. It is fantasy straight out of the TCT organ grinder and his monkeys are responding. What in Gods name should Arthur be cut but then appointed to the Jnr set up! He has shown no ability or interest in that area in the five years he has been here. To have him hovering around the new coach and putting his bib in is trouble with a capital T. A ridiculous suggestion. Sake him and be done with it and wish him goodbye.
I don't get all this talk about changing coach after 1 terrible year. We were trending the right way and then had the salary cap disaster which cost us players and we couldn't replace them. We would have made the semis. We then came 4th even given the issues we faced. After that we lost Semi thanks to his ex missus lying, a massive loss. The NRL changed the way the refs ruled on things this year which impacted our smaller more mobile pack and benefited the larger packs by giving them more rest. We lost Edwards due to off field issues, we had several long term injuries, the review has identified a lack of staffing and resources, yet there's so many people on here demanding this year be laid solely at the feet of 1 person, BA. People like Chief keep throwing up Maguire and claiming his premiership success on the back of rookies was so fantastic, but ignore they had Burgess (best forward in the game at the time), Inglis at the peak of his powers and Luke who was the 2nd best 9 at the time behind Smith. Someone pointed out they went shit for 2 years after that and Chief said Burgess left and GI was injured - but Chief, those same rookies you claim he did so well to get up for a premiership were now premiership winners and rep players - contradicting your own argument.
The truth of the matter is, you need the staffing, resources etc but you also need a lot of luck. You need luck with injuries, luck with refs calls, luck at the judiciary. A lot of that is luck, but a lot of it is man management of the refs like Smith gets away with. As much as anything we've lacked a leader for years, Mannah has never been a true leader, he's too soft - he doesn't get us that luck we need.
I hate what we dished up this year, I hate getting another spoon, I hate my mates putting crap on me about the eels. But I believe there were legitimate excuses and it won't matter who is coach if they are not fully supported and also unless we get a true on field leader. And for that I do blame BA, his blind faith in Mannah has not helped his cause. Don't forget we lost something like 8 or 9 games this year when we scored the same number of tries as our opponents, we win those and we play semis. Would a real on field leader have got us wins in those close games? Maybe. Would a different coach have got us those wins? Maybe. Would a bit of luck got us those wins? Probably. Yep, we got a spoon, it sucks, but given some of the legitimate adversities we faced and taking into account how close we came in a lot of games despite playing poorly, there's still been some upside. The progression of Mahoney, Niukore, Kafuisi and other juniors is a huge positive - despite others claiming BA has done nothing about pathways and juniors, yet another incorrect claim. We've started recruiting to target deficiencies, not for the sake of it - something that had been a major problem in the past.
I agree if we are looking like another 2018 part way through 2019 if the changes are implemented, then BA has to go, but I can't accept laying the blame for 2018 solely at his feet at this point in time.