League: McFadden replaces Iro at Warriors

By Steve Deane

Canberra connection continues as Elliott ally joins staff in assistant's role

McFadden's appointment to replace Tony Iro (picture) comes a week after Elliott confirmed New Zealand 18s and Vulcans coach Ricky Henry as an assistant. Photo / APN
McFadden's appointment to replace Tony Iro (picture) comes a week after Elliott confirmed New Zealand 18s and Vulcans coach Ricky Henry as an assistant. Photo / APN

The assembly of the Warriors' brains trust for 2013 is complete, with long-time Matthew Elliott ally Andrew McFadden joining the club from the Canberra Raiders.

Tipped by the Herald to be unveiled as Tony Iro's replacement last weekend, McFadden's appointment was delayed as he negotiated a release from the Raiders.

One half of the livewire Mac Attack halves duo alongside Mark McLinden at the Raiders at the turn of the century, a chronic groin injury forced McFadden into retirement at just 26.

Since then he has served his coaching apprenticeship at Canberra, initially under Elliott and then David Furner, with his time at the Raiders split by a two-season stint assisting Mick Potter at Super League club Catalans Dragons.

The appointment comes a week after Elliott confirmed New Zealand 18s and Vulcans coach Ricky Henry as an assistant. Although the coaching and training staff are now in place, the club's recruitment drive is far from complete.

An assistant to U20s coach John Ackland will be appointed shortly, while at least two more staff are expected to be added to the football department now headed up by general manager of football Dean Bell.

On the frontline, the departures of Iro and Craig Walker following the sacking of Brian McClennan have been off-set by the recruitment of head trainer Carl Jennings, sports science manager Brad Morris, performance analyst Adam Sadler and the promotion of Ruben Wiki to full time trainer. The extra investment in staff would eventually total several million dollars, chief executive Wayne Scurrah said.

"As committed to by the owners in July, we have made a multi-million dollar investment into the club and predominantly into football. I'm confident in saying it would be the most significant spend in the history of the club."

The appointment of McFadden deepens a Raiders connection at the club that also includes Wiki and Jennings.

"I had a great time at Canberra as both a player and a coach but the chance to join Matt at a club like the Warriors is hugely exciting," McFadden said.

"This club has so much going for it with a fantastic pool of talent to draw on."

His first day on the job was at Bethells Beach this morning for the squad's first training session there since the outstanding Sonny Fai disappeared when trying to save his brother and four cousins on January 4, 2009.

McFadden made 76 appearances for the Raiders from 1997-2001 and split another 24 NRL games between a season with Parramatta and two years with Melbourne.

He began his coaching career under Elliott in 2005, first as Raiders' Jersey Flegg coach and then New South Wales premier league coach before graduating as a first team assistant under Potter and Furner.

- NZ Herald

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