Panthers sack coach Anthony Griffin

Discussion in 'General Rugby League' started by rhugh89, Aug 7, 2018.

  1. rhugh89

    rhugh89 Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Panthers part ways with coach Griffin four weeks out from finals


    Michael Chammas Chief Reporter
    Mon 6 Aug 2018, 06:18 PM



    The Penrith Panthers have sacked coach Anthony Griffin just four weeks out from the finals.

    As revealed by NRL.com on Monday afternoon, the Panthers notified Griffin on Monday that his services would not be required beyond the end of this season despite being contracted until the end of 2020.

    Griffin in turn walked away from the job, leaving assistant coach Cameron Ciraldo as the caretaker coach for the rest of the season.

    It's understood Penrith have made the decision to part ways with Griffin because of a belief he would have been unable to take the club to the level required to win a premiership.

    In the end, it was the constant speculation about his future that brought about his demise.

    With every rumour, Griffin pushed people away. With every story, he delegated less and less to those he was meant to trust.

    It's the main reason why Luke Phillips left the coaching staff mid-season to join the Dragons. It's also the reason the players' opinion of him diminished with each week.

    Unfortunately, Griffin's attitude and lack of trust for those around him cost him his job, with the board growing tired of mediocre performances from a football team oozing with talent.

    Make no mistake, the Panthers hierarchy know the club is in a premiership window. Those windows are open for two years. Three, if you're lucky.

    While Griffin was contracted until 2020, it became clear that window would shut far sooner if they didn't make changes.

    Griffin has one of the best winning percentages of the current coaches in the NRL, however the Panthers are no strangers to making tough decisions.

    After Sunday's come-from-behind win against the Canberra Raiders, the board let their frustrations be known. They contacted general manager Phil Gould and brought an end to Griffin's tenure at the foot of the mountains.

    Gould met with Griffin on Monday afternoon, informing him there was no longer support for him to coach the club in 2019.

    In turn, Griffin saved himself and the club from an ensuing circus and walked away immediately.

    From the outside, it looked two come-from-behind wins against Manly and Canberra in the past two weeks may have saved Griffin's job.

    Instead, it was a death sentence. To those at the club, there was a belief the slow starts were a result of the coaching strategies in place, and their second-half resurgence was in fact a result of throwing the game plan out the window.

    The other point worth making is the future of halfback Nathan Cleary. In just under three months it is expected the Wests Tigers will make him an offer too good to refuse.

    An opportunity to earn mega dollars playing under his father Ivan. Now Penrith have a bargaining chip of their own.

    Ciraldo and Cleary are extremely close, so too is Cleary's relationship with his Panthers teammates.

    Perhaps a happier environment with a clear picture surrounding the club's future may entice Cleary to remain at the club beyond 2019.

    Griffin, who took over in controversial circumstances when Gould punted Ivan Cleary at the end of 2015, still had two years running on his contract.

    It's understood the Panthers won't have to pay out the final two years of Anthony Griffin's contract and have reached an agreed pay-out.

    Panthers group CEO Brian Fletcher issued a statement over Griffin's exit.

    "There has been much speculation and rumours about the club and head coach Anthony Griffin over the last few weeks," Fletcher said.

    "After discussions with Anthony Griffin it is time to end that speculation. By mutual agreement, the club and Anthony have agreed to part ways, effective immediately.

    "Anthony departs the club after much success, having taken the Panthers to the finals in the last two years and leaves the club on track for another finals appearance in 2018.

    "We would like to thank Anthony for his service to Panthers and wish him well for the future."


    https://www.nrl.com/news/2018/08/06...h-anthony-griffin-four-weeks-out-from-finals/
     
  2. member 2299

    member 2299 Danny 'Bedsy' Buderus

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    The major problem at Pennies, IMHO, is the size of Gould's head!
     
  3. Lord of the Skraelings

    Lord of the Skraelings Danny 'Bedsy' Buderus

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    Sacked when looking at a top 4 finish.

    Surely Cleary wouldn't be dumb enough to go back there?
     
  4. Billy

    Billy Danny 'Bedsy' Buderus

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    The way it sounds in the interviews I've seen is that Gould wanted to be the first person to tell Griffin that he was being replaced.
    He told Griffin yesterday that they were going to replace him for next year and Griffin said get stuffed then and left immediately.
     
  5. Lefty

    Lefty Chris Joynt

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    Penrith table a four-year deal to Ivan Cleary.


    UPDATE: Penrith have offered Tigers coach Ivan Cleary a four-year deal as a replacement for Anthony Griffin in a desperate bid to keep gun halfback Nathan Cleary at the club, according to NRL.com.

    The Tigers are refusing to release him but there are fears he could unite with his son at the foot of the mountains after meeting with Penrith officials on Monday night

    "It is my view that Ivan will be with the Wests Tigers as head coach for at least another two years as he has a contract with us," Tigers chairwoman MarinaGo told NRL.com

    EARLIER: Rumours of young gun halfback Nathan Cleary heading to West Tigers to be coached by his father Ivan have been the talk of the rugby league world for several weeks.

    Monday afternoon's announcement that Penrith had parted ways with coach Anthony Griffin could pave the way for a sensational plot twist that would see Ivan head back to the foot of the mountains and Nathan stay put.

    The senior Cleary coached the Panthers for four seasons before being given the boot after a disastrous 2015 season.

    Following the news of Griffin's sacking, rumours of a Cleary family reunion at Penrith have spread like wildfire.


    Fox Sports league journo James Hooper discussed the story on Big League Wrap on Monday night.

    "The name that is red hot, that is being pushed really strongly, is Ivan Cleary," James Hooper said.

    "Young Nathan is clearly a superstar of the future... He's the franchise player that they want to build their club around.

    "Even though Ivan was sacked last time, I think there's a bit of feeling that trying to get him back is a little bit like buying back the farm.

    "Ivan set up the Panthers, had them in tremendous shape, for whatever reason they had an off year in 2015.

    "All the talk over the last couple of hours has been that Ivan is a chance to return there next season."

    20-year-old Cleary has proven to be a class playmaker in 2018, earning selection and playing a key role in the successful New South Wales State of Origin team.

    Michael Ennis said Nathan is a supreme talent but he'd be surprised if Ivan left the Tigers.

    "Nathan is their key retention, so to bring his father back seems like that'll be the play to keep Nathan at the club," Ennis said.

    "The thing that surprises me the most around this is that Ivan Cleary is a straight shooter.

    "From everything we've seen, he's been an honest and open book in everything he's done.

    "The one thing he's asked is for everyone to get on board this bus, you're saying he's just going to rip the handbrake up and bail?"

    Hooper was sceptical but refused to rule out Panthers making a play at the 47-year-old.

    "I'm saying that it's been discussed in the last couple of hours in the wake of this massive news with Anthony Griffin," Hooper said.

    "Initially I dismissed it and didn't think it could be feasible, but in rugby league, you just never say never."

    Panthers assistant coach Cameron Ciraldo will take charge of the club in the short term as they attempt to negotiate the final four home-and-away games.

    Penrith sit in fifth position and look set to play finals, leaving many stunned at their decision to ditch Griffin.

    www.sportingnews.com/au/league/news/penrith-panthers-ivan-cleary-coach-anthony-griffin-phil-gould/1xe0chhi4fdh31tj3g2l9wg3yl

    I had a good laugh at this!
     
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2018
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  6. packo

    packo :) (:

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    Ivan will stay. Nathan will go to Tigers I reckon
     
  7. R_A

    R_A Darren Albert

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    There was smoke all season coming from this and it was probably the right call in the long term to make this move. Penrith weren't going anywhere with Griffin there at the moment.
     
  8. rhugh89

    rhugh89 Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    This is getting ugly...

    Wests Tigers may consider legal action against the Penrith over Ivan Cleary deal

    WESTS Tigers CEO Justin Pascoe has hit back at the Penrith Panthers in a pointed video released on the club’s website on Tuesday night.

    The former Panthers CEO and current Tigers boss said his club would not be bullied, and said they are in a strong position to fight for their head coach.

    It has been revealed the Panthers approached Tigers coach Ivan Cleary a fortnight ago, and have since sacked their head coach Anthony Griffin to make a play for him.

    The offer is believed to be a rich four-year deal, and would have the added benefit of allowing star halfback Nathan Cleary to remain at the Panthers to be coached by his father.

    In response, Pascoe outlined the details of the situation and issued a fierce warning to the Panthers, warning the club is willing to fight ‘tooth and nail’ to hold their coach to his contract.

    In a sign they are serious, The Daily Telegraph are reporting that the Tigers are considering legal action .

    Below is the full transcript of Pascoe’s statement as it appeared on the Wests Tigers website.

    Wests Tigers: Justin, it has been a big 24 hours in NRL coaching circles. Can you give us an update where things are at with Wests Tigers and Ivan Cleary?

    Justin Pascoe: Sure. So Ivan Cleary came to me late yesterday [Monday] afternoon and informed me in a discussion that he had been approached by Penrith — that they were keen to get him to go out there and coach. We had a really open and frank discussion around that. Since then, we met with Ivan this morning and we were very adamant in that meeting that there is really no option other than to continue on as head coach of the Wests Tigers. Certainly, we engaged in a contract nearly 18 months ago now under good faith and we expect that contract uploads and continues on.

    WT: If Ivan does ask for a release, will the club grant that release?

    JP: No. As we expressed to Ivan this morning, the position of the club — and it’s a really strong position — is that the club is going to fight for this. Under no circumstances will we be granting Ivan Cleary a release. He has got a contract with this club until 2020, we’re building something special here and we want that to continue.

    WT: Why wouldn’t the club grant him a release?

    JP: Because we’re not going to be pushed aside or bullied or railroaded by anyone. This club, and myself, have to make decisions that are in the best interests of the Wests Tigers and, first and foremost, our fans, our members and our stakeholders. Giving our head coach to a rival club is not a decision that is in the best interest of the fans or stakeholders.

    WT: It’s been an uncertain day for Wests Tigers Members and fans. Do you have a message for them?

    JP: I’m really disappointed that they’ve had to go through all the speculation. I’m bitterly disappointed that a rival club has decided that it’s appropriate practice to try and poach a coach with two-and-a-half years left on his contract. My message is very simple — Ivan has been a terrific coach, he has shown great character in what we’re trying to build here and we are going to fight tooth and nail. This is a really strong, proud club with a lot of rich history and it’s a very different club than what it was previously. We’re not going to let anyone come in and just poach our coach without a fight and we’re going to fight tooth and nail to keep Ivan. We’re not going to release him. The club is a really proud club, as I said, and we’re in a strong position to fight this all the way.


    https://www.foxsports.com.au/nrl/nr...l/news-story/9f0bc61285b019206a66803126945f9f
     
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  9. cowboyman

    cowboyman Timana Tahu

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    Why would Ivan go back to work under Gus after already been thrown under the bus by him.
     
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  10. Lefty

    Lefty Chris Joynt

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    He would be better waiting at the Tigers for Nathan to join him when his contract with the Panthers expires.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  11. rhugh89

    rhugh89 Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    The inside story of how Phil Gould moved to bring Ivan Cleary back to Penrith and secure his star halfback



    Paul Kent, The Daily Telegraph
    August 8, 2018 10:12am




    FINALLY we know who shot Bambi. It was Gus Gould, consigliore for Penrith Panthers.

    The hit took place last week when Penrith chairman Dave O’Neill, in a move orchestrated by Gould, called Ivan Cleary to a meeting.

    Cleary has told Wests Tigers he thought the meeting was about the future of his son Nathan, the NSW and Penrith halfback.

    The Tigers had no idea of the meeting but would not have objected. The club was quietly optimistic Cleary might be delivering them his son at some point in the future.

    Gould had already conceded he thought the father and son would work together at some point in the future.

    What followed was one of the great double crosses in rugby league, a code that celebrates a certain level of chicanery.

    This one will take its place among some of the best ever.

    Cleary was as surprised as any, he told his club, that Gould had something completely different in mind with his O’Neill meeting.

    He wanted Cleary to leave Wests Tigers and coach Penrith.

    From that moment on, Anthony Griffin’s fate as head coach of the Panthers was sealed.

    And now the deal is all but done.

    Forget the charade both Gould and Cleary are expected to perform as they go about putting some respectable distance between an offer being made and the offer being accepted, Cleary is off to the Panthers.

    So long as the Tigers let him go.

    On Tuesday, the Tigers sat solid on their position that Cleary is under contract for two more seasons and that he is going nowhere.

    “We’re going to hold our position,” a Tigers official said.

    “Until your position changes,” I said. This is, after all, rugby league.

    “Yep,” he said, “but you’ve got to hold it.”

    Gould has pulled off one of the most audacious signings in football history.

    It was only three years ago he sacked Cleary, claiming he was “tired”. Apparently, he needed more than a good mattress and a lie down.

    And it was only last year Cleary signed on at Wests until the end of 2020.

    The ramifications are widespread for a game slowly being beaten down by poor management and enough PR blunders to sink a small fleet, than simply a coach changing clubs.

    When Cleary walks out on Wests Tigers it will punch a great hole of disillusionment in the game.

    Cleary sold something bigger than football at the Tigers.

    The Tigers have emerged as the feel-good story this season. The Little Train That Could.

    They opened the season with wins against the two premiership favourites, Sydney Roosters and Melbourne.

    A follow-up win against Melbourne three weeks later, in another tight defensive performance, showed they were no fluke success.

    Tigers fans realised it was real.

    On the back of that they became the equal most watched team on Fox League, with Brisbane, where television numbers are up five per cent this season.

    Home crowds grew from a 13,500 average last season to 18,000 this season.

    All built on a simple philosophy that began last year. A simple sentence that became a catchphrase, that came at a time when the Tigers were most vulnerable

    James Tedesco and Aaron Woods were weighing offers from rival clubs. Mitch Moses was about to go.

    So Cleary quickly put a deadline on their contracts, saying they could either “get on the bus” or get going.

    The fans bought in.

    Finally, their little team had found an attitude. Somebody to take them where they wanted to be. Nobody was bigger than the club.

    Cleary has not taken a wrong step since.

    He set about fixing the club’s salary cap, refusing to pay overs for players. A past sin.

    He bought intelligently, luring Ben Matulino and Russell Packer. He threw a lifeline to Benji Marshall, a club legend, then doubled down when he hired back Robbie Farah midway through this season.

    A mural of Marshall in Tigers kit screaming was painted on an inner west wall. To the side it read “On the bus”.

    They are all part of why Gould set the Cleary meeting last week after sacking him as Penrith coach in 2015.

    In a swift sentence O’Neill quickly whitewashed Gould and Cleary’s fractured history, saying that was then and this is now.

    Gould has always been adaptable. His talent as a player and a coach was his speed between the ears. His nickname “Gus”, a carry-over from his playing days, speaks to his adaptability.

    Sent out on a pre-season road run Gould trotted along the asphalt only so far before a certain kind of logic prevailed.

    He was a footballer, he realised, not a marathon runner. He stopped and caught the bus back to training.

    His teammates quickly named him “Gus” after the line in the Paul Simon song, 50 Ways To Leave Your Lover.

    So Cleary met his manager George Mimis on Monday to talk about a deal those closest to the truth believe is already done.

    And the song continues.

    “Hop on the bus, Gus … Make a new plan, Stan …”


    https://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/s...k/news-story/91ff54d99d38325459d866daefe509de

     
  12. rhugh89

    rhugh89 Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Ivan Cleary addresses players as Wests Tigers discuss compensation option


    Michael Chammas Chief Reporter
    Wed 8 Aug 2018, 12:00 PM



    Ivan Cleary addressed the Wests Tigers players on Wednesday morning for the first time since news broke of Penrith's plan to lure him back.

    NRL.com understands he couldn't guarantee where he would be next season. He couldn't lie to his players, admitting he had a tough family decision to make.

    The Tigers have called an extraordinary board meeting on Wednesday night to discuss the future of the organisation, however as it stands Cleary has not yet asked for a release and is not expected to front the board.

    Wests Tigers will fight to ensure that release is rejected if requested, however they are also prepared for things to escalate with the Panthers in the pursuit of Cleary's signature.

    They have discussed putting a multimillion-dollar compensation fee on the coach and demanding player transfers from the Panthers if Cleary is to ask for a release from the final two years of his contract.

    That's the last resort. Their intention is to deny any potential release request and expect Cleary to continue business as usual, such is their opinion of the coach.

    Some would argue Cleary's position at the joint-venture club is almost untenable given the amount of consideration he has already given to leaving the club to link with his son Nathan at the Panthers.

    But the reality is the Tigers have been thinking about extending his tenure, not ending it.

    The problem is Ivan's unbreakable bond with his son, and rightly so, it has clouded the usually unflappable coach's judgement.

    For months the Tigers have been gearing up to raid the Panthers for their halfback to join Luke Brooks, Josh Reynolds and Moses Mbye in the spine. They wanted the Cleary combination.

    It's not that Nathan doesn't want to join the Wests Tigers. Perhaps it's more accurate to suggest he just doesn't want to leave Penrith. It's where he played most of his junior footy. It's where he went to school. It's where all his friends play.

    The Tigers know this isn't about anything but family. Ivan loves the Tigers. He's happy at the club.

    But in the background, his son senses an opportunity for the family to be reunited and that is something Ivan just won't disregard.

    The tug-of-war between the two clubs has escalated, with Tigers chief executive Justin Pascoe declaring the club would not be bullied by their western Sydney rivals.

    The Tigers have vivid memories of the Panthers putting a $1 million transfer fee on Matt Moylan when they were in discussions with him about leaving Penrith last year.

    Penrith have also been privately reminding people of all the coach and player contracts the Tigers have ended early in recent years, including that of their last coach, Jason Taylor.

    Panthers general manager Phil Gould on Tuesday night retweeted a story from the Western Weekender in 2015 which highlighted Pascoe's resignation from the Panthers to take up the job as Tigers chief executive.

    Pascoe didn't breach his contract and only had to provide four weeks' notice, but the Panthers haven't forgotten the way in which he left and the staff he took with him.

    Tigers chairwoman Marina Go was on business duties in Melbourne when news of Penrith's interest in Cleary broke earlier in the week.

    She has returned to Sydney and has called for a meeting of the board to discuss the predicament the club now finds itself in.


    https://www.nrl.com/news/2018/08/08...-as-wests-tigers-discuss-compensation-option/
     
  13. Frank McWilliams

    Frank McWilliams Clint Newton

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    Tigers in box seat, hold Ivan to his contract and tell him Nathan is welcome when contract with Penrith is over.
    Penrith don't get Ivan and lose Nathan
     
  14. danknights

    danknights Mark Hughes

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    Geez Penrith must think they are a club like the Broncos. Sombrero of funds to just up and attack anyone they find and want. I hope the plunder into the darkness.
     
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  15. Barry Crush

    Barry Crush Tony Townsend

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    My money is Nathan end next season to Roosters to replace Cronk and Ivan to stay out West with a 2yr extension to his contract and Gus looking for plan B, Barrett to Panthers and Brad Arthur to Manly, Michael Maguire to Dragons and Steve Price to Parramatta
     
  16. Simon Templar

    Simon Templar Matt White

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    Just watching the interview on 360 with Griffin - he is just what the Hunter region need to develop their Junior nursery. Proven in 2 structures
     
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  17. Billy

    Billy Danny 'Bedsy' Buderus

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    Griffin would be a good assistant coach if you believe all the stuff being said about him that he tries to do everything himself and works really hard at everything.
    Give him a specific role and he'd really nail it I think.
     
  18. Simon Templar

    Simon Templar Matt White

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    Billy , I was sold on the way he has successfully delivered the transition of home grown Juniors into NRL regulars.
    Which appears to go against the trends of other clubs where their juniors have a meteoric rise then fade into obscurity .
    He acknowledged that there is a lot more involved than talent.
     
  19. R_A

    R_A Darren Albert

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    There was an interesting article on NRL.com the debunked Griffin's theory that he was the one who fixed up Penrith's juniors when it was actually a guy Gus hired in 2011 called (cant remember his name off the top of my head, Matt?) that created the Panthers junior development pathways program from scratch and resulted in the finals/premiereships in Harold Matthews, Jersey Flegg, SG Ball, NSW Cup, and the Toyoyta/Holden Cup Under 20s. All before and some during Griffins time there. It then went on to mentioned how some staff at the Panthers were annoyed that Griffin took credit for that.

    I do agree that if you give him a role then he will probably be really good at it. He will probably be really good at the Super League as well.

    But I am concerned that he overworked some players, and he had similar issues with that at the Broncos.
     
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  20. R_A

    R_A Darren Albert

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    To be honest I don't think there is a whole lot that can be said that is juicy from a legal perspective, so we'll probably have to wait a while to find the full scope of the truth. Understandably both sides are picking at things that suit their argument, and so are the media to suit the agendas but from what I have seen it paints Griffin in a different and possible worse light as a head coach for mine. Griffin looked like he was interviewing for potential future head coaching jobs.

    The only thing that I think Gus truly 100% wasn't entirely true was about that all of this was done to appease Nathan Cleary which is understandable. Because they want to build the team around him for the future and that's fine.

    And to be honest, none of us, and not even the media know the full extent of the review done within the Panthers coaching ranks and potentially from the dribs and drabs that have been leaked out by Panthers staff it could be a lot worse between Griffin and his staff/some players which led to his demise. "Adapt or die" as they say.

    Also I laugh at the clowns in the media who talk about the integrity of the game and morale ethics in regards to the Panthers sacking a coach with two years to run so they can hire a coach with two years left to run when THEY are the ones who have been speculating all year about things and Nathan Cleary's contract situation basically spurring it on to happen. They are the last people who should be pointing fingers.
     

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