General Chris Rattue: Cleary out McClennan In

NEWBIE_old

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Its time the Warriors had a fresh vision

Source: https://www.nzherald.co.nz/chris-rattue-on-sport/news/article.cfm?c_id=1502848&objectid=10720044

The Warriors' plodding defeat on a boggy ground at Manly might have been far from the various nadirs for this frustratingly unsuccessful club, but the time is right to at least review the position of their coach.

Ivan Cleary out and Brian McClennan in would be my opening call, to kick the debate off.

Cleary is not doing well enough - either with results or style - to see out his latest contract to the end of next year. There is no time to waste, either - not that I believe the club will make a change.

Win or lose, the Warriors should be about flair, in keeping with the football traditions of this city, and in a country where rugby league needs to make every post a winning one. Almost every round should be a heritage round, in the true sense, but Cleary's team are failing in this vital department.

Then there is the awful two-win, four-loss start to the season.

One of those wins was in a mistake-ridden match against the Roosters, leaving the Cronulla victory as scant evidence of any hope.

And in the background are teams from the Cleary era, since 2006, which have made the generous playoff system, but never gone on with the job.

The hiring and firing of sports coaches is not a sure-fire business, although there are worse things you could do than hang on to Alex Ferguson at Manchester United or empty the vault to secure Wayne Bennett, who has turned Clint Eastwood-like as league's senior citizen gun-for-hire.

There ain't a lot of laughs when Bennett is around, but he can make up for that on Grand Final day. The fanatical Melbourne coaching genius Craig Bellamy rivals Bennett. Behind them are a clutch of men who have sporadic success, but more average years and inevitable failures.

Bennett has shown at the Dragons that fortunes can be turned very quickly while Bellamy's mob continually thrive because the spine of his team is strong and the transition of development players precise.

This is in contrast to the Warriors, who have been depressingly drab from the outset this season when wobbly Parramatta - under new coach Steve Kearney - easily bombed them into submission at Eden Park.

Unfortunately the Warriors are treading water, falling short of the great promise, doing the mid-table yo-yo from season to season.

There is no rhythm to their work, especially in the middle of the field. They have only two recognised props in Sam Rapira and Russell Packer, yet Packer was dropped two weeks ago. Others responsible for carting the ball up are converted backrowers, and play like it.

Dummy halves come and go, their names a blur.

There was that tough little bloke they brought back from England, the grannygate fella, Aaron Heremaia was rescued from obscurity, and the Aussie veteran Shaun Berrigan was given a brief shot this year. Roll up, roll up - the ageing workaholic Nathan Friend is the latest No 9 on the way.

Too much shifting sand and you end up beached.

Backrowers move to the centres, a young fullback goes to the wing, Feleti Mateo is a forward one minute and a back the next, other recruits like Brett Seymour and Joel Moon drift between first grade and lonely parks. Backrower Steve Rapira hasn't been sighted since returning from North Queensland, representing money that could have gone on a genuine prop.

On their own, these might not be overwhelming problems. Taken in combination though, the Warriors are unstable and Cleary is responsible.

So what do we measure life by?

Reality versus expectations is one guide and having emerged from the Steve Price era and the 2009 disaster, the Warriors should have been set for a strong, title-challenging season.

They are defending with vigour, but spark and innovation are missing on attack. This team isn't going to win a premiership.

Next issue: what are the power dynamics running this club?

Eric Watson is an absentee owner. Wayne Scurrah, the chief executive, does not come from a league background, and has only worked with one NRL coach, Ivan Cleary. So who is in charge of whom, and who gets on with whom?

The club bosses may see greener pastures ahead, but they would be better off making a pre-emptive strike against inevitable disappointment.

Locally, the candidates would be Tony Iro, Cleary's assistant; John Ackland, his former assistant and the club's development maestro; and McClennan, the former Kiwis and Leeds coach who had success in both jobs.

I'm not sure about their individual aspirations, and in the past Ackland has shied away from an interest in senior head coaching duties. He could be the most interesting candidate of all, because of an affinity with the talent that comes through the Auckland system.

Iro can't hold a candle to the record and experience of McClennan, who would be a very decent punt.

McClennan, who has worked for the Auckland Rugby League since returning from Leeds, would bring a new enthusiasm to a tired club. He has had a wide-ranging, top-level career to hone his unquestioned coaching knack.

If a wider net can be cast, overseas, then fine. The Warriors should be capable of attracting top coaches.

From the safety of the keyboard, the equation is simple for a club that is missing the magic ingredient.

Cleary stabilised a shaky club, and has had one very good season in 2008. He is a solid investment, of fairly predictable but almost certainly limited returns.

There are always risks in making changes, but also in not making them. Time to roll the dice.
 

NEWBIE_old

Guest
I might be wrong but I think everyone that is hoping that if McClennan be comes the coach then we will automatically win a premiership, I know McClennan will bring passion and pride back into the Warriors, but i dont think with the current personnel the Warriors have even McClennan would bring a premiership to the Warriors
 

Northern_Union

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If anyone thinks McClennon is going to be an instant fix is kidding themselves. McClennon is still a must though.
 

Spence_old

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I might be wrong but I think everyone that is hoping that if McClennan be comes the coach then we will automatically win a premiership, I know McClennan will bring passion and pride back into the Warriors, but i dont think with the current personnel the Warriors have even McClennan would bring a premiership to the Warriors

Passion, Pride and structure is what I want. A premiership would come after.
 

mrblonde_old

Guest
So who do you put the better defence down to - and, um, don't they say defence wins premierships? As of last night our defence was ranked 8, or attack was ranked 11 by the NRL.

And isn't McClennan off the market now he's signed with the ARL?

Bit out of left field but: May I present Vulcans coach Ritchie Blackmore (he's involved with the Maori team too I believe) - I know it's early in the season (same point I'll make with Cleary) but 5-1 record so far. If the Vulcans can keep this up, is Blackmore worth looking at for a more senior role?

Watch for Rattue to change his tune at least once before the season is out - either because the Warriors turn things around big-time or some article preaching stability etc.
 

NEWBIE_old

Guest
You'd think McClennan would have a release clause in his contract if an NRL position became available, Blackmore as McClennan's Assistant?
 

Northern_Union

Guest
I'm pretty sure the ARL will release Bluey should an NRL gigg get thrown his way.
 

Warrioraholic_old

Guest
I hate the cut throat industry that is professional sport, but everybody at the club must be accountable and that goes from the CEO all the way to the cleaners.
Ivan hasnt been getting the results and im afraid he needs to be shown the door.
Lance isnt the only one at the club from the 2002 grand final, Ivan was in that team and although he has a fairly good win/loss ratio since he became coach, I still think he doesnt have what it takes to get the team to click up through the gears.

Look at all our finals appearances, we just didnt rise to the occasion and that falls heavily on the coach.

I would love Ivan to be here till 2022 and become the new Wayne Bennett but I cant see it happening, Give Bluey a crack!
 

Ryan_old

Guest
Look at all our finals appearances, we just didnt rise to the occasion and that falls heavily on the coach.
When you say this, does "rise to the occasion" mean win the GF? Or simply perform admirably (ie not win, but go out with a bang) in the finals series?
 

Warrioraholic_old

Guest
I was talking about when Manly made us look like chumps, and then the Titans did it aswell.
Both those seasons I thought we had the talent and depth to make it to a GF but we just didnt kick on
 

BeepeeNZ_old

Guest
Whether it was "Bluey" or someone else, it is time for Cleary to pack his bags. Other Coaches had better records and they were dumped a lot quicker. But in saying that, the team also needs looking at and maybe it is about time they got paid on Performance. That might make some of them buck their ideas up.
 

mrblonde_old

Guest
We might well need a new coach, we certainly need a player with the nerve to question the refs more often - ala Mateo on Saturday night but with a bit more subtlety.

Time for Mannering to go as captain? Bit hard on him, but tough titty if it's in the team's best interests...
 

Northern_Union

Guest
Mannering isn't a captains A-hole. But we aint exactly top heavy with other captaincy options either.
 

Moz_old

Guest
I might be wrong but I think everyone that is hoping that if McClennan be comes the coach then we will automatically win a premiership, I know McClennan will bring passion and pride back into the Warriors, but i dont think with the current personnel the Warriors have even McClennan would bring a premiership to the Warriors

There is no automatic win to the premiership I dont think anyone here is that naive, but I agree with the article 100% a change at the helm is needed for the simple fact is its not working is it.
Also I also believe Bluey offers more than pride and passion to a team I believe he is also an astute tactician, according to an interview I heard on Radio Sport on Brendan Telfers show years ago when I was still in Auckland from a guy writing a book on top coaches ( ala Graham Henry, Bluey etc ) and what makes them tick.
 
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kiwi's 13-6_old

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i'd like to see mclennan as the coach, cleary's done ok but it time for a change been 5 years of now of up and down performances!

so many bad recruitment choices made by warriors in cleary's time most recent was getting rid of nafe seluini... ervan tuimavavae, cooper vuna, bring stacey jones back than axing fiend who went on to win a premiership.

we need a coach who can create a dynasty i reckon mclennan could do that with a 3 year contract
 

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