Tigers call Penrith unethical over Cleary

Billy Freeman

Wests Tigers chair Marina Go has accused Penrith of unethical behaviour in its pursuit of the club's coach, Ivan Cleary.

Go said the Panthers were out of order trying to sign Cleary while he had more than two years left on his contract.

"It's really poor form that they have approached our coach when he has two years left on his contract," she said on Fox Sports' League Life program on Wednesday night.

Despite Cleary being expected to seek a release from his Tigers contract and link with the Panthers next season, three years after being sacked from the club, Go said it was business as usual for the Tigers.

The drama follows Monday's shock sacking of Penrith coach Anthony Griffin.

Go said she missed a call from Panthers general manager Phil Gould on Wednesday morning but she was not in a hurry to return it.

"I don't know what he wants to say ... he wants to speak to me, I have no reason to speak to him," she said.

Go said the Tigers were not "looking for sympathy" and only wanted what they were legally entitled to.

"We value (Cleary), he's a fantastic coach, he's done such great things with our club," Go said.

"The players love him ... we want to retain that, and we have every reason to, and every right to."

Go said she spoke to Cleary on Monday night, and the coach confirmed to her in that conversation that he had been "approached" by another club.

She said she came out of that conversation "feeling positive" and that nothing had changed since then.

The club has been steadfast in its position that it would not let Cleary walk out on his contract.

"Ivan has not asked for a release," Go said.

"Even if he were seeking a release, we wouldn't grant him a release. That position hasn't changed."