Michael Maguire hopes to build a dynasty for New Zealand Rugby League – and has promised that he will be around for the long term.

The former Wigan and Rabbitohs mentor was confirmed as the new Kiwis coach yesterday, ending the search for David Kidwell's successor.

Maguire was the outstanding candidate, which was emphasised by Dean Bell, who headed the selection panel, but his qualities and track record also make him a prime contender for the next job on the NRL merry go round.

But Maguire, whose contract runs through until the 2021 World Cup, insisted there is no risk with his appointment, no possibility that he would leave early.


Maguire is ambitious, but said that any future club role would have to accommodate his Kiwis responsibilities.

"I wouldn't have to insist – I would just let them know that is happening," said Maguire.

"What I have learnt is that to do both in my eyes is going to be really beneficial moving forward. It would be a positive for all parties. That club – if I ever sit down with one – has to be able to fit with where I am going moving forward."

Bell confirmed that Maguire's future intentions had formed part of the interview discussions, given his value on the NRL's open market.

"We couldn't compromise getting the best coach just because they might take an NRL job, but obviously it was a question that we had to ask," said Bell. "But Michael told us he will be very particular on the next organisation that he goes to, and part of that is having the capacity to do both roles. That was really important. We didn't want someone that would just fill a gap for a while."

Having the dual roles – and Maguire seems almost certain to be head hunted in the future - would be unusual, but not unprecedented in the modern era.

Former Warriors' coach Daniel Anderson managed it in the early 2000s, Tim Sheens was Tigers and Kangaroos coach for seven years, and Wayne Bennett currently has club and country jobs.

Michael Maguire named as the new Kiwis rugby league coach. Photo / Photosport
Michael Maguire named as the new Kiwis rugby league coach. Photo / Photosport

Coaching gets more demanding with every passing year, but Maguire has no doubts it could be done.

"It's like anything…if you have good people around you then anything is possible," said Maguire. "I've had some incredible people working for me over the years. It's all about your staff."

Maguire also confirmed that he would like to have at least one assistant coach from these shores.

It seems vital, given the need for a succession plan and the fact that no Kiwis were considered for the head coach role this time around.

"I'm very open about my assistants," said Maguire. "I'd like to get someone from over here, it is about looking at who is available."

During an extended media session at NZRL headquarters yesterday, Maguire regularly emphasized pathways, legacys and creating something beyond the Kiwis.

"[I want to be here] as long as I can possibly make it." said Maguire. "My plan is that it is long term, I want to build something very special for the New Zealand people."

"There is so much talent coming out of this country. It's about having the right approach, and the right mindset. We have to expect we are a winning team. Standards that we put forward are key to being successful for a long, long time…and creating something for the whole game here."

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