Cartwright, Henry emerge as replacements for Barrett
THE untenable relationship between Manly coach Trent Barrett and club administrators has assured he will not be coaching the Sea Eagles next season.
In an interview with The Daily Telegraph on Wednesday, Manly chairman Scott Penn said the club has made a shortlist of experienced coaches to replace Barrett, including John Cartwright, Neil Henry, Michael Maguire and Tim Sheens.
NRL.com is reporting Manly players have expressed their desire for assistant coach Cartwright to take over the reigns next season if Barrett does walk.
"We love Baz and it's unfortunate the situation we find ourselves in," Tom Trbojevic said.
"But if he isn't here we have someone at the club ready to take control. The boys have a lot of respect for Carty. He understands what we've been through and has a great relationship with everyone here. He's got my support to coach this club if Baz isn't here."
Cartwright has been assistant at both Manly and North Queensland since he was sacked as head coach of the Gold Coast in 2014 after eight years at the club.
However, there is also a suggestion Henry, who was sacked as coach of the Titans in 2017, is firming as the favourite to take the position.
Notably absent from the list are former Manly coaches Des Hasler and Geoff Toovey.
Speaking on Triple M's The Grill Team on Wednesday morning, Matty Johns said Henry is a good "educator" but Manly needs a coach who understands the culture of the club.
"Neil Henry's strength is he's an educator. He did a good job at Canberra in the early days and then he had mixed success at North Queensland … but then Paul Green came in and won a competition a year later so there was obviously a lot of work done behind the scenes," he said.
Johns said Manly coaches tend to being the best out of the club, and was surprised the Sea Eagles had ruled out the likes of Toovey and Hasler.
In his press conference on Wednesday morning Barrett said he would be making a statement in due course, but will concentrate on getting the team through the last two games of the season.
However, Barrett, who has been at the club since 2016, has been publicly supported by his senior players.
Star fullback Trbojevic maintained the players have not been told Barrett will not be their coach next season and said the team will back him as their coach for 2019 until they're told otherwise.
"As far as I'm concerned Baz is coaching us next year, we haven't been told otherwise. We really love having Baz as a coach," he said.
"I've enjoyed every moment with him and he's a great coach.
"Ideally he will be our coach going forward."