Who will be next in the Manly hot seat?
Who will be next in the Manly hot seat?

Hasler tops Sea Eagles’ hit list to replace Barrett

A BEHIND-the-scenes push has begun to lure two-time premiership-winning coach Des Hasler back to Manly.

Hasler, who coached at Brookvale between 2004 and 2011, has been included in the Sea Eagles' hit list of possible replacements for outgoing coach Trent Barrett.

Current Manly assistant John Cartwright, former South Sydney premiership-winning coach Michael Maguire and former NSW coach Laurie Daley are also on the Sea Eagles' radar.

The Daily Telegraph revealed on Tuesday that Barrett had tendered his resignation as head coach last month and was currently serving his 12-month notice.

The Sea Eagles released a statement on Wednesday, refusing to address the situation, but it's believed Barrett - who did not return calls - will leave at season's end as Manly find a new coach.

Despite a messy exit from the club in 2012, Hasler remains one of Manly's favourite sons, having won premierships as a player in 1987 and 1996 and as coach in 2008 and 2011.

Hasler, who hasn't coached since being punted by Canterbury in September last year, couldn't be contacted but it is understood he is closely monitoring the Manly situation.

Barrett’s future lies elsewhere. (Adam Yip)
Barrett’s future lies elsewhere. (Adam Yip)

Some influential figures at the club are pushing for Hasler's return.

It was Hasler who built Manly from the ground up back in 2004. With no budget and a limited roster in his early years, Hasler led Manly into a grand final just four years later.

Hasler's manager, George Mimis, would not comment.

One well-placed source did however say: "Of all the people in the industry, Des knows what's under the bonnet at Manly. It would be a great story. It makes so much sense."

The Daily Telegraph can reveal Daley was actually a frontline contender to replace Geoff Toovey at Manly in 2015, when Barrett got the job.

The Penn family, Manly's owners, still have enormous respect for Daley, who is currently holidaying overseas.



Manly would love a return to these kind of days.
Manly would love a return to these kind of days.


Cartwright has re-signed as an assistant until the end of 2020 but, with head coaching experience on the Gold Coast, could be an easy solution for Manly by simply upgrading his deal and elevating him into Barrett's role.

Cartwright has intimate knowledge of the Manly playing roster and staff.

Maguire comes with impeccable credentials, having led South Sydney to the 2014 premiership. He could even be first choice of the Penn family.

Others coaches including club legend Toovey, former Canberra, North Queensland and Gold Coast coach Neil Henry and Melbourne Storm assistant coach Adam O'Brien would also be considered.

Manly owner Rick Penn responded to a Daily Telegraph text, saying:

"With all the media speculation at the moment, we're leaving all the media inquiries to Lyall (Gorman, Manly CEO)."

Asked about Barrett or a replacement coach, Gorman said: "Nothing on either front."

Toovey just last week claimed he would be available to coach Manly again if asked. South Sydney's Anthony Seibold and Parramatta's Brad Arthur are former Manly assistant coaches but wouldn't be interested now in the top job.


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