The Battle of Brookvale is set to rage again this week with a fiery Manly Sea Eagles board meeting to be held in coming days – and a push to immediately appoint Geoff Toovey as coach atop the agenda.
As the fallout from Des Hasler’s stunning defection to the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs from 2013 continues, it can be revealed that some directors are seriously considering a move to bring in Toovey for next season.
Hasler has another year to run on his present deal and he is adamant he can coach his side to back-to-back premierships despite signing with the Bulldogs for four seasons.
But there is a belief amongst some board members that the Sea Eagles should limit the damage that has been done by handing Toovey the keys to first grade immediately.
There is deep concern about the affect the Hasler move is having on the club financially, given it has been prompted by a fallout between the coach and several powerbrokers – namely leagues club boss Bob Reilly and chief operating officer David Perry
Sea Eagles chairman Scott Penn was tightlipped when pressed on the coaching position last night.
“It’s important that we get consensus at board level on the coach,” Penn said.
“We need to identify a successor and Toovs is definitely in the frame. Promoting from within is something the club has done in the past.
“Canterbury had the time to pull their plan together.
“They took three or four months to pick their target and they got him. We would like to do the same. We want to get it right. It’s important for us and the players that we get it right. But we want to make a timely decision.”
There remains deep division in the club over Hasler’s decision to walk out on his beloved club.
The Daily Telegraph has been told that Hasler and Manly were squabbling over as little as $50,000 during negotiations throughout the year – and now Hasler has slipped through their fingers.