Suns to start search for Rodney Eade’s replacement

By Murray Wenzel, Murray Wenzel is a Roar Guru

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    Gold Coast assistant coach Dean Solomon is the best man to lead the Suns this weekend, but chief executive Mark Evans says the AFL club has not given a thought to who will coach them beyond this season.

    Speaking on Tuesday as they announced the sacking of Rodney Eade, Evans and club chairman Tony Cochrane were adamant they had not started the search for his replacement.

    Current AFL assistant coaches Stuart Dew (Sydney), John Barker (Carlton) and Brett Ratten (Hawthorn) are among the contenders being thrown up to take over from Eade.

    Admitting there was an “experience vacuum” at the club, Cochrane would not be drawn on whether they would attempt to lure a veteran coach or take a chance on someone new.

    “We honestly have not considered a replacement, I promise you we have not spent a known second of time considering who his replacement may be,” Cochrane said.

    Cochrane said the board unanimously endorsed the decision to part ways with Eade after Evans presented the findings from an ongoing review on Monday.

    Solomon will coach the side for the remaining three games of the season, Eade closing with 16 wins from 63 games to his name since arriving on the Gold Coast at the start of the 2015 season.

    “I haven’t spoken to anybody about being senior coach of Gold Coast Suns for next year,” Evans said.

    “He (Solomon) has that level of respect for them and they have that for him and that makes him quite clearly the best person to galvanise what we need to do now.”

    Eade told the Herald Sun that he was disappointed, but accepted the decision.

    “I’m too experienced and been through a lot to be bitter – bitter is not an emotion,” he said.

    The remainder of the football department is under serious examination following another underwhelming season, in which the Suns sit 15th.

    The Suns sacked inaugural coach Guy McKenna at the end of the 2014 season, bringing in Eade from Collingwood where he was an assistant to Nathan Buckley.

    While the Suns have struggled and never finished higher than 12th in six seasons, fellow expansion side Greater Western Sydney have excelled in the past two years, making the preliminary finals last year and sitting second in 2017.

    Evans indicated there could be more changes as they seek to emulate the Giants’ rise.

    “Rodney took us to a level and now we’ve decided it’s time to have a change of senior coach to go to the next level,” he said.

    “Of course we’ll get the best coach to take us to that.”

    Adding to the Suns’s woes, co-captain Tom Lynch will miss the last three games of the season with a knee injury.

    © AAP 2018

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    The Crowd Says (6)

    • August 9th 2017 @ 10:46am
      Christo the Daddyo said | August 9th 2017 @ 10:46am | ! Report

      “chief executive Mark Evans says the AFL club has not given a thought to who will coach them beyond this season.”

      That’s either an outright lie (which is my guess), or this is further evidence as to why the Suns are a basket-case.

      • Roar Guru

        August 9th 2017 @ 10:58am
        Cat said | August 9th 2017 @ 10:58am | ! Report

        I disagree. Clubs should stop picking coaches before they have even begun interviews. Sure have some ideas who you want to invite to interview but don’t rule out or in anyone until a comprehensive process has been under taken.
        No one was going to hand Clarkson a job but Hawthorn invited him to interview, impressed during the process and won the job fairly.

        • August 9th 2017 @ 11:18am
          Christo the Daddyo said | August 9th 2017 @ 11:18am | ! Report

          I think you’ve misunderstood me. I don’t for one second think they should have picked someone at this point. But surely it would be logical (at the time they made the decision to not continue with Eade) to have a framework of what they want in a senior coach and who some likely candidates would be that might those characteristics? But Evans is claiming they haven’t done that. Logically its either a lie or incompetency.

          • Roar Guru

            August 9th 2017 @ 11:24am
            Paul D said | August 9th 2017 @ 11:24am | ! Report

            It is a lie. But they don’t want to attract attention so they’d rather look incompetent than risk jeopardising their chances of landing their preferred candidate. And it’s very believable to see them as incompetent too.

            • August 9th 2017 @ 12:01pm
              Christo the Daddyo said | August 9th 2017 @ 12:01pm | ! Report

              I can’t quite follow the logic behind deliberately appearing publicly incompetent in order to attract a high quality coach – but that’s the Suns for you I guess!

              • August 9th 2017 @ 1:26pm
                Leighton said | August 9th 2017 @ 1:26pm | ! Report

                Its logical in the twisted nepotistic world of league football coaching appointments. I would like to hope it is partly true. The club board and management need to work out what they want from a coach and coaching group, what they need in terms of where the club is at, the state of the list etc.

                There would be a lot of potential (and risk) in the Suns appointing somebody very experienced in coaching and team management, say a coaching director from outside league football for then the new head coach to work with. It was great to see this thinking when Carlton had Ange Postecoglou on their panel to select a new coach. Brings a different and complimentary perspective. League football desperately needs new ideas and professionalism from outside its tiny little world. Its happening here and there, and may it continue.

                The Suns, hopefully, can do something a bit risky, but helps them set up a strong club that can attract quality coaching professionals and others. Otherwise, GC will continue to be a lifestyle destination for many for non-football excellence reasons, and its hard to blame anyone for that.

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