WOLLONGONG, AUSTRALIA - FEBRUARY 23: Knights coach Nathan Brown looks on during the NRL trail match between the St George Illawarra Dragons and the Newcastle Knights at WIN Stadium on February 23, 2019 in Wollongong, Australia. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

Despite Newcastle's 1-4 start to the season, the position of coach Nathan Brown isn't under threat, according to Knights CEO Phil Gardner.

The Knights started their season in the best possible fashion, with a 14-8 win over the Sharks in round one.

Since then however, losses to the Panthers, Raiders, Dragons and Sea Eagles have seen the Knights tumble down the table.

Given the nature of Brown's contract with the Knights (Brown signed an open-ended deal with no finish date), speculation has mounted about his future, although Gardner says Brown's head isn't on the chopping block.

"Every time a game is lost, there seems to be speculation about coaches, about players," Gardner told thehearld.com.au.

"Everyone has an opinion and they are entitled to it. They are passionate and that's what brings people out. The fans all have a view on these things and that's their right.

"But for us, there is absolutely no discussion being had around Nathan's future. None. There is no heat in it at all because he has the full support of everyone here. It is that simple.

"Yes, we are hoping for better results on the scoreboard as we go through the season. But no-one is working harder than Nathan is to make that happen. I can assure you his tenure is not an issue for us. I can't make it any more plainer than that.

"To be honest, I think there might be one or two other coaches in the NRL under far more pressure than Nathan is."

Gardner has faith in Brown, and is not only happy with him at the helm, but believes he's the man to take the club forward.

"We are all disappointed when we get such great crowds coming to the games that we are not hitting the heights we are looking to hit," Gardner said.

"There is no-one hurting more than Nathan and the team. But we as an organisation are all in this together here. We are a very tight team of people. We are obviously looking to do better in first grade but I am very confident we will get through it.

"And looking at the bigger picture with where we are at now compared to a few years ago, the long term future of the club is absolutely outstanding. There is so much good stuff happening at the club with the centre of excellence and the quality of our young kids coming through that's all down to the quality of our coaching group and Nathan is driving that."


  1. Brown is dead man walking. Soon as the CEO comes out and says the coach has 100% support is the first sign he hasn’t!

  2. I wonder how the CEO is feeling now , after just having been trounced by the Titans. Sitting at 15th on the ladder (pending the outcome of the Raiders/Broncos game) and yet this time last year, they were in 10th position. All that new talent and yet they’re going backwards. Something definitely needs to be done and the sooner the better.

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