Michael Cheika is firmly in the Wests Tigers’ sights with the joint merger club reportedly keen to hire the former Wallabies coach as its new general manager of football.
According to The Daily Telegraph, the Tigers will launch a bid for Cheika as early as this week to take over the role which would leave the 56-year-old in charge of the roster and coaching staff in addition to the grassroots and recruitment of the club.
Former Tigers player Mark O’Neill was said to be in the hunt for the job, but at this stage, the Tigers are set on Cheika for the vacant role.
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Cheika recently coached the Argentina national side in the 2023 Rugby Union World Cup, leading them to a fourth-placed finish.
Cheika’s contract with Argentina was due to end after the World Cup.
With Argentina’s Rugby World Cup campaign over, CEO Justin Pascoe and chairman Lee Hagipantelis will resume talks with Cheika.
Hagipantelis was asked about Cheika and his credentials in an interview last month while relaying his disappointment that the club’s interest in the former Wallabies coach had been leaked.
“I’m told he’s (Cheika) a very impressive character and people speak very, very highly of him, but as to the Wests Tigers and the Head of Football role, all the applicants and candidates are being considered on a strictly confidential basis,” Hagipantelis told SEN.
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“Again, here we are talking about things being reported in the paper to my consternation. It’s just beyond me to explain this.”
While Cheika is mostly known for his exploits in rugby union, he has had his share of experience in league as well.
Cheika worked at the Roosters as an adviser in 2020 and coached Lebanon in the 2022 Rugby League World Cup.
He has a close relationship with Tigers assistant coach Robbie Farah. It has been reported it was Farah who suggested the Tigers take a look at Cheika.
Source website: www.foxsports.com.au