NRL: Elliott's fate sealed on Saturday

By Steve Deane

Matt Elliott talks to the media following his side's defeat to the Sharks. Photo / Getty Images
Matt Elliott talks to the media following his side's defeat to the Sharks. Photo / Getty Images

Matt Elliott's fate was sealed shortly after Saturday's horror loss to the Sharks in Sydney.

The club announced this morning he had resigned as coach of the New Zealand Warriors.

Club chairman Bill Wavish and director of football Dean Bell were among the Warriors top brass who attended the match at Remondis Stadium. Elliott met with Wavish after the heavy defeat, Bell confirmed.

Dylan Cleaver: Should Elliott be the only one to go?

"Matt had the conversation with Bill Wavish and basically that was the outcome - Matt agreed to step down," Bell said.

While he expressed sympathy for Elliott, Bell didn't dispute that the 37-6 defeat against the bottom of the table Sharks was one of the worst in the club's 20-year history.

Elliott quits as Warriors coach

"I totally agree with you," he said. "I was pretty embarrassed.

"But for Matt to take the blame for that performance would be ridiculous. The team has got to take responsibility for that kind of performance."

However with owners Owen Glenn and Eric Watson having pumped vast sums of money into the club over the last 18 months, Elliott's results were unacceptable.

"Head coaches are the ones who bear the brunt of poor performances," Bell said. "You don't have to be a scholar to know that we haven't totally happy with the way we have been playing. Unfortunately the coach carries the can.

"It is the inconsistency that has plagued the side for a long time. We are just so determined to get over that. The owners have invested so much money in the football [department] over the last couple of years. These things shouldn't happen. Really it comes down to players being more accountable and being made to be accountable."

It has been billed as a resignation, however the timing of Elliott's departure would suggest the Warriors have acted decisively in a bid to salvage the season before it is too late.

"We are, what, round five and we are a couple of points off second place?" said Bell. "We are excited about what is ahead of us. We are all disappointed that Matt is gone because he has done a lot of good for the club.

"But we really believe in [replacement] Andrew [McFadden]. He has got the rest of the year to show us the confidence we have in him is fulfilled."

Who is Andrew McFadden?
McFadden was today announced as acting Warriors coach till the end of the 2014 season following the resignation of Matt Elliott.

The 36-year-old is a former halfback who played 100 NRL games for the Raiders, Eels and Storm between 1997 and 2004.

Following his retirement from the game in 2004, McFadden joined the coaching staff at the Raiders the following year where Elliott was head coach.

McFadden took charge of the Raiders NSW Cup side in 2006 before leaving the club at the end of the season to take up an assistant coaching role at the Catalans Dragons. He was at the Super League club for the 2007 and 2008 Super League seasons before returning to the Raiders as Toyota Cup coach in 2009 and was then promoted to assistant coach for the Raiders.

He held the assistant coaching role in Canberra for three seasons before joining Elliott at the Warriors in 2013.

- NZ Herald

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