Des Hasler cops brutal swipe from Manly great: 'Had his time'

Seen here, Manly coach Des Hasler looks on during an NRL media conference.
Des Hasler's future as Manly coach has come under question after the club's worrying late season collapse. Pic: Getty

Manly legend Max Krilich has delivered a scathing assessment on Sea Eagles coach Des Hasler, after suggesting that it's time for the club to part ways with the veteran mentor.

The Sea Eagles have lost four straight games since the rainbow jersey saga that threatened to derail the club.

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Admittedly, Hasler had little to do with the controversy that saw seven players boycott their loss against the Roosters in round 20, when the team was still very much in finals contention.

The veteran coach has since come under fire for the club's worrying run of form, that has also included losses against Parramatta, Gold Coast and Cronulla - the latter two being particularly embarrassing blow-out defeats for the Sea Eagles.

Saturday night's 34-point loss to Cronulla was one of Manly's heaviest defeats at Brookvale, with the Manly players criticised for a lack of passion and commitment that is normally a staple of the proud club.

On Monday night, Channel Nine league reporter Danny Weidler said on 100% Footy that Hasler's position as coach was safe for now, before stressing there was “anger brewing about their performances”.

While supporters of Hasler could put the team's form slump down to a reported divide at the club in the wake of the rainbow jersey fiasco, Krilich says the issues at Manly were obvious even before the Roosters match.

Manly's two-time premiership winning former captain claims the Sea Eagles have become stale and predictable under Hasler, and that a change of coach might be needed at the club.

“We were beaten and overwhelmed by a very good side,” Krilich told the The Daily Telegraph in reference to Saturday's heavy defeat to the Sharks.

“But on Des, to be very honest I think he’s probably had his time, not that it’s for me to say or decide. Others can judge that.

“I’m saying the club might need refreshing. He’s been a very astute coach but some of the tactics of late look a bit stale to me.

“I don’t like bagging Des because he’s done some terrific stuff for Manly over a long period of time.

“But everyone has their day in the office and his time might be up.”

One man who doesn't share Krilich's criticism of the coach is Sharks legend Paul Gallen, who insists it's Manly's powerbrokers that should shoulder the blame for the side's late-season collapse.

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“That Women in League round or pride round incident — that was the club, that wasn’t Des,” Gallen said.

“There’s no doubt, I agree: they’ve fallen off the perch since then. They were really pushing towards that top eight and (were) a big chance, and they’ve gone down hill since then.

“There’s no doubt (the pride jersey drama) affected the team. But wasn’t it someone at the club who made that decision?

“So, why should Des wear all of it?

Gallen commended Hasler for fronting the media over the pride jersey furore, and says the coach should be given more credit after being put in an almost impossible situation.

Seen here, Manly captain Daly Cherry-Evans and coach Des Hasler facing a media barrage over the rainbow jersey controversy.
Manly captain Daly Cherry-Evans and coach Des Hasler faced a media barrage over the rainbow jersey controversy at the club. Pic: Getty

“I thought when I saw (Hasler) at the press conference, ‘What’s he doing it for?’

“The person who made the decision should have been doing it.

“And I don’t care what they say — that affected their season no end.”

With Manly winless in their last five matches, Hasler will be desperate to turn things around and avoid some unwanted history.

Defeats in their final two games would mark the worst end to a season in Manly's history, having conceded 120 points in their past three matches.

with AAP

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