Lenagan’s hint at coaching vacancy

Ian Lenagan
Ian Lenagan

Ian Lenagan says Wigan’s next coach will probably come from the NRL or rugby union.

The club owner is hunting for a successor for Shaun Wane, who has decided to leave his hometown club at the end of this season.

Lenagan believes the opening has come too soon for Wane’s highly-rated No.2 John Winder to step up.

Instead, he suggested he is more likely to look at an assistant coach from Down Under – but has not ruled out any candidates from the 15-a-side code.

Lenagan, who was previously owner of London Broncos, said: “If I point out that I have replaced three coaches in my lifetime – Tony Rea with an assistant, Brian McDermott; Brian Noble with an assistant, Michael Maguire; and then Michael with Shaun Wane, who was an assistant, it gives you some idea that I’m unlikely to go for an existing Super League coach.

“Where is the market? Rugby union or an assistant from the NRL, that’s where (the next coach may) come from. You can look around and see experienced rugby league coaches in union, and of course you think of the likes of Shaun Edwards, Mike Ford and Paul Deacon. But they are expensive and they have to retrain.

“Or there is the NRL. I think it’s one of those two.”

Wane, stepping down for a fresh challenge, has previously said Winder is not ready to take over the hot-seat – a view shared by Lenagan.

“John has all the characteristics, he will be a head coach, it’s just a bit too early,” said Lenagan, stressing he would not rush into making the next appointment.