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Warriors coach Matthew Elliott faces the sack

Axe looming: NZ Warriors coach Matthew Elliott.

Axe looming: NZ Warriors coach Matthew Elliott. Photo: Getty-Images

Matthew Elliott is set to be the first NRL coach sacked this season, with Warriors owners Eric Watson and Owen Glenn understood to have run out of patience after Saturday night's 37-6 loss to Cronulla.

Warriors chief executive Wayne Scurrah and chairman Bill Wavish did not respond to inquiries about Elliott's future on Sunday but a reliable source told Fairfax Media that the former Canberra and Penrith coach had already been advised that the club was going to move in a different direction.

Watson tweeted on Sunday: "Tough day at the office @NZWarriors ... however definitely some questions to be answered #WarriorsForever".

It is unclear whether Elliott has coached his last match for the Warriors or will see out the season as he is understood to have been preparing assistant coach Andrew McFadden to take over the reins next season when he was due to move into a coaching directors role.

Wigan coach Shaun Wane has been constantly linked to the Warriors but he has recently agreed to an extension with the Super League champions. There was speculation on Sunday night that McFadden may take over in a caretaker capacity with Wane a possible long term replacement. 

Elliott was appointed to the Warriors job last season after Storm coach Craig Bellamy rejected a massive offer to remain in Melbourne.

The Warriors were also linked to Australian coach Tim Sheens and he may be a long term option to replace Elliott.

Under Elliott, the Warriors won 11 matches last season to finish 11th and have this year won two of their five games - against North Queensland and Wests Tigers.

Elliott relinquished his role as coach of the USA Tomahawks at last year's World Cup in Britain to focus on preparing the Warriors for this season.

He posted on Instagram on Sunday night: "Life is not about agreeing with decisions. It's very rare when everyone does. It's about dealing with decisions, finding how they serve you best and getting on with life."

Fairfax Media reported after last month's round two loss to the Dragons at Eden Park that senior officials at the club went to the changing shed after the game and a warning was given out that heads would roll unless results improve.

It is also believed that Elliott read the riot act to the players after that defeat.

The Warriors won their next two games in Townsville and Wellington but were terrible against the Sharks, although hooker Nathan Friend made 70 tackles as the team were forced to play with little posession.

Asked afterwards if he felt the players had played for him, Elliott said: "That's a legitimate question and one that needs to be asked. This inconsistent tag is not unique to me, either.''

 

7 comments so far

  • If JC himself moved to Wellington he couldn't get the "bros" to play disciplined football if they didn't want to. If the owners of the Warriors franchise have a telephone to big boy's father and he is partial sending his son back down for a season the Warriors may have a slight chance this year. If this is impossible any coach is as good as the next, so why worry.

    Commenter
    RTP
    Location
    Sawtell
    Date and time
    April 06, 2014, 9:28PM
    • As a warriors fan I am dumbfounded by the teams play against the Sharks. I thought they had got on track for the season with the Nth Qld win but this match against the Sharks was appalling. It was worse than the 60-6 defeat against Penrith. Worst Sharks team Ive ever seen , worst scoring record , no wins but the Warriors turned up and played like they were stoned or something. 37 missed tackles , 50% completion rate and no drive , no courage , no will to win. No game plan either it seemed.
      I was picking for Elliot to be sacked end of season if the Warriors failed to get into the top 8. Seems the owners are way ahead on that one. No wonder Bellamy turned down the Warriors ,. I can see why Todd Carney turned down 1,000,0000 offer from the Warriors for 800K to stay at the Sharks.

      Commenter
      JediNudist
      Location
      Perth
      Date and time
      April 06, 2014, 10:04PM
      • The players are the ones to blame as the forward pack is a bunch of slackers that obviously four needs to go. Ikahihifo, Matagi, the two Lousis and Rapira are not playing to potential and should be off-loaded by the Warriors. A change of coach today or at the end of the year is not going to turn things around unless the players lift, including their fitness, and start playing like professionals. Why is it that the smallest man on the team makes the most tackles in nearly every game?

        Commenter
        Akari
        Date and time
        April 06, 2014, 11:13PM
        • Always the coach, never the players, at fault. If these blokes are good enough to play in the NRL they shouldn't need to be told where to stand on the paddock. The coach can't think for them, and shouldn't have to.

          Commenter
          mutt
          Date and time
          April 06, 2014, 11:49PM
          • The Warriors have discovered what the Raiders and Panthers discovered: Matt Elliott can't coach.

            Commenter
            Noodles
            Date and time
            April 07, 2014, 8:17AM
            • the obvious choice to anyone who watches NRL is JON Ackland should be coach!!!! he stepped down this year but knows most of their players as he was coach of under 20's team for years.

              Commenter
              Peter
              Date and time
              April 07, 2014, 8:33AM
              • Daniel Anderson summed it up perfectly after he was dumped by the Warriors many years ago........The reason why the Warriors are so inconsistent ...they lack discipline and focus

                Commenter
                Claude Q Snodgrass
                Location
                Pendle Hill
                Date and time
                April 08, 2014, 8:37AM

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