Fox Sports chief reporter James Hooper believes the future of Cronulla coach John Morris is clouded.
With the 40-year-old’s contract with the Sharks set to expire at the end of 2021, Hooper set the rumour mill to overdrive by naming a raft of possible replacements for Morris’ position.
Hooper also raised the possibility of Sydney Roosters assistant coach Craig Fitzgibbon trading tri-colours for sky blue in 2022.
Although the veteran journalist remains adamant that Fitzgibbon will honour his handshake deal with the Chooks, Hooper explained that, like Morris, Fitzgibbon’s deal expires at the end of next season.
Hooper added further fuel to his flames by highlighting Fitzgibbon’s family connection to Cronulla – his father Allan was the club’s head coach between 1988 and 1991.
Sharks fans will no doubt be perplexed by Hooper’s suggestions due to Morris’ relative success in his time at the helm.
Despite having limited say over the playing roster and previous rumours that the club may be forced to fold or relocate, Morris has steered Cronulla to the finals in both seasons as the club’s head coach.
Although this may be the case, Hooper fanned his now rippling blaze by suggesting that Darren Mooney’s appointment as the Shark’s head of football could spell Morris’ death knell.
Hooper claimed that as Mooney’s role will be focused around improving the club’s roster, Morris may have little to no say over how the Sharks spend their salary cap war chest.
Hooper reported that Cronulla will have in excess of $4.5 million dollars to spend at the completion of 2021, with the big money contracts of Matt Moylan, Josh Dugan, Andrew Fifita, Shaun Johnson and Aaron Woods all set to expire.
In spite of all this speculation, Cronulla has yet to state whether Morris will be at the helm beyond 2021 or not.