Rumours about Potter off the mark

Margie McDonald
From: The Australian
August 30, 2013 12:00AM

A RESTRUCTURE of the football department at Wests Tigers was presented to the board last night with head coach Mick Potter asking for a few more staff.

Speculation Potter would lose his job after just one season was, Potter said, just that.

It’s not surprising the plans to update and upgrade the set-up at the Tigers didn’t include eliminating Potter since he compiled the restructure document.

He presented it to the board with chief executive Grant Mayer last night.

That doesn’t mean, however, that the board will accept all his recommendations.

It is understood there is still some division over whether Potter is the right man for the job.

He took over from Tim Sheens after Sheens was removed last October, when the Tigers fell to 10th. The club is now in 14th spot with two games left.

For the past two months Potter’s future has been a topic of debate, even after Mayer said three weeks ago that the former Catalans and St Helens coach would be coaching at the Tigers next season.

Potter said the restructure did not include any coaching director or mentor overseeing him.

“I have been around a little while. It’s not like I’m a novice,” he said. “Once the season is over, we’ll make a couple more coaching (assistants) appointments.”

Royce Simmons and Steve Georgallis handed in their notice earlier this year, while rehabilitation program leader Andrew Leeds is also leaving.

“There’s nothing revolutionary about it,” Potter said when asked about any changes.

"We’re just trying to put more sports science in there and pushing for a general upgrade from where we are.

“We want the right people in the right positions, along with having enough medical staff to bring us to an equivalent level with best practice in the code.”

But that’s next year and Potter is more concerned with tonight’s match against competition leaders Sydney Roosters at Allianz Stadium.

Benji Marshall plays his 200th match, Lote Tuquiri his 150th and Robbie Farah passes Chris Heighton as the most capped Wests Tigers player with 202.

That number now equals Tom Raudonikis’s for the Wests Magpies, while he still has some games to catch legend Paul Sironen (246) as the most capped Balmain Tiger. The two clubs merged in 2000.

Potter thinks Farah will not only break three club records but start nipping at players like Steve Walters (272) and Luke Priddis (315) as the most NRL games for a hooker. “He’s got a lot more rugby league to play,” Potter said.

“He’s definitely going to stretch a few to try and break what he’s going to be able to set.”

Farah tried to relieve a little of the heat off Potter yesterday by saying the problems at the Wests Tigers were there up to two years before he arrived.

“We need to get back on track, not only through stability with the coach, but within the playing group. We need to get back to playing good footy,” Farah said.

"So regardless what’s happening with the coach, it’s a fact we haven’t played well enough.

“Myself as captain that’s what I’m concerned about. I want us playing to our potential.”

Nothing less than top 8 next year Mick.

@Knuckles:

Nothing less than top 8 next year Mick.

It is going to be a very young side next year and putting this expectation on the coach may put too much pressure on these kids to deliver.

I would argue that we need to see an improvement in ladder position with the following stretch targets:

  • win more than half of matches
  • positive for and against
  • defence rated 8th or higher

Wests tigers are playing Sotuhs tonight not roosters as per the report.

@Gary Bakerloo:

@Knuckles:

Nothing less than top 8 next year Mick.

It is going to be a very young side next year and putting this expectation on the coach may put too much pressure on these kids to deliver.

I would argue that we need to see an improvement in ladder position with the following stretch targets:

  • win more than half of matches
  • positive for and against
  • defence rated 8th or higher

There are a lot of hard markers in the place Gaz !!
Some would say if you miss the top 8 it’s a failure.

@Knuckles:

@Gary Bakerloo:

@Knuckles:

Nothing less than top 8 next year Mick.

It is going to be a very young side next year and putting this expectation on the coach may put too much pressure on these kids to deliver.

I would argue that we need to see an improvement in ladder position with the following stretch targets:

  • win more than half of matches
  • positive for and against
  • defence rated 8th or higher

There are a lot of hard markers in the place Gaz !!
Some would say if you miss the top 8 it’s a failure.

I agree with Gary except for the positive for and against. To go through next year with a winning percentage of over 50% would be ideal, but we can’t expect our attack to improve markedly with Brooks in his first season.

I still think we will get thoroughly pumped by the top sides next year, but will be competitive against teams like the Bulldogs, Knights, Cowboys etc.

Hopefully all these “off field” issues can be sorted asap so that we can concentrate on what the vast majority of other clubs are concentrating on - acquisitions. Market is pretty dry at the moment but contracts means just about nothing these days and we are due for some luck.

With a young team anything can happen in 2014,but I do expect a solid improvement, how many wins that translates to is anyone’s guess but I expect the blows outs to decrease and the gap between the top four teams to narrow. Injuries will determine if we make the bottom of the eight as we cant afford a major especially in the spine

Attitude in general should improve after this season.

Skill set should improve as the season goes on.

Whether it I improves or not and by how much it improves will determine porters future IMO.

Posted using RoarFEED 2013

@Gary Bakerloo:

@Knuckles:

Nothing less than top 8 next year Mick.

It is going to be a very young side next year and putting this expectation on the coach may put too much pressure on these kids to deliver.

I would argue that we need to see an improvement in ladder position with the following stretch targets:

  • win more than half of matches
  • positive for and against
  • defence rated 8th or higher

I would think if you win more games than you lose you will definitely be in the top 8

Posted using RoarFEED 2013

@Gary Bakerloo:

@Knuckles:

Nothing less than top 8 next year Mick.

It is going to be a very young side next year and putting this expectation on the coach may put too much pressure on these kids to deliver.

I would argue that we need to see an improvement in ladder position with the following stretch targets:

  • win more than half of matches
  • positive for and against
  • defence rated 8th or higher

Reaching the first targets would pretty well guarantee a top eight position.

i for one am happy they are giving potter every chance to implement the changes he deems necessary. ive been a supporter of his since his appointment and truly believe he has thus far made all the right moves.

im very optimistic about next season (hmmm, i seem to be every season?!) and really all i hope for is a much better disciplined team with a big desire to win.

i think potter will do well in this role and that in a few seasons time the club and its supporters will be thankful he is there.

My expectations are that Potter chooses the best team and the available players play to their ability.

I assume if we get a decent run with injuries we can make the 8 or go close to it if that occurs.

I just want a season with minimal injuries, particularly those of the serious kind. I can’t remember the last time we had a good season injury wise -oh yeah, it was 2005!

I’m happy that Potter will be around next year. Judging by the game against the Dragons he will have the team playing a lot straighter and harder than in previous years. Thank God, cause I’m really over the side to side, trying to run around the defence playing style of the Sheens era.

Can’t wait to see who he has chosen as assistant coaches.

@Flippedy:

I just want a season with minimal injuries, particularly those of the serious kind. I can’t remember the last time we had a good season injury wise -oh yeah, it was 2005!

I’m happy that Potter will be around next year. Judging by the game against the Dragons he will have the team playing a lot straighter and harder than in previous years. Thank God, cause I’m really over the side to side, trying to run around the defence playing style of the Sheens era.

Can’t wait to see who he has chosen as assistant coaches.

True it was good to see we kept on going foward and didnt go to side to side always we have good fowards next year im excited with the future i cant wait for a massive year next year.

2014 is the year for Potter to deliver success for WT… He has nothing to lose.

Posted using RoarFEED 2013

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