Under-fire Manly coach Geoff Toovey says Daly Cherry-Evans’ decision to stick with the club will have no impact on his job security.
Cherry-Evans on Wednesday announced he had reneged on his four-year deal with the Gold Coast and would utilise the controversial round 13 rule to stay on Sydney’s northern beaches.
Toovey’s head is reportedly on the chopping block after Manly’s lacklustre 3-8 start has left them rooted to the bottom of the NRL table after 12 rounds.
Fairfax Media has reported that Penrith assistant coach Trent Barrett will meet with Manly on Friday to finalise a deal to take over as Sea Eagles coach next year.
Toovey’s list management came under criticism following the departures of veteran backrowers Anthony Watmough and Glenn Stewart this season, while star five-eighth Kieran Foran is on the move to Parramatta next year.
However, he said the coup to keep the club’s star halfback would not ease the mounting pressure on his shoulders.
“I don’t think (Cherry-Evans’ retention) is relevant really (to his job security),” Toovey said on NRL360 on Fox Sports.
“It’s still fantastic from a coaching point of view.”
Toovey defended his charge’s decision to stay at Manly, arguing Cherry-Evans always wanted to stay put even though initial negotiations were handled poorly.
The Sea Eagles pulled their offer from the table which led him to sign with the Titans in March.
Toovey said there had been miscommunication and mismanagement on both sides, however he did not believe Cherry-Evans’ reputation had suffered as a result.
“Sure it may be damaged a bit on the side of other clubs and other management,” Toovey said.
“But I know the Manly fans are so pleased about the decision and that’s who I’m most pleased for.
“…He’s come through the local grades (at Manly) and to lose him to another club when he’s at the peak of his career, is devastating for Manly fans.
“And they’re the ones we need to look after and they’re the ones that count.”