Paul Green is tipped to agree to a long-term deal to stay at the North Queensland Cowboys and former club star Brent Tate insists the coach's retention is vital for the future of the team.
Last week Green told NRL.com that he was confident he would be staying on and NewsCorp reported on Wednesday night that the Brisbane Broncos, through a third party, approached Green about his interest in being Wayne Bennett's successor. This came as no surprise to Tate who won a premiership under Bennett at Brisbane in 2006.
"I think Greeny is the only logical choice for Brisbane post-Wayne. I don't think there is anyone else who could stick their hand up who would even come close, so that makes complete sense," Tate told NRL.com.
"As for why the Cowboys need to keep him, you just have to look at what Greeny has done for the place. He's turned the club from being a good team into one of the best teams.
"He is going to be in demand, and so he should be. He is a hell of a coach and he's going to be a long-term coach.
"I hope that he stays but footy is a business and everyone has got to make their best decisions on what they go home to at night."
Green privileged to be part of Testimonial
It is understood Cowboys chairman Laurence Lancini has no intention of letting Green go and will table an offer which reflects that belief.
"Laurence doesn't lose too many that he doesn't want to let go, so I think he will stay," Tate said.
There have been whispers about Brisbane's interest for months, and in December when NRL.com spoke to Green about it he said he did not wish to comment on the Broncos.
He did say he had unfinished business at the Cowboys where he has taken the club to four consecutive finals series, won the 2015 premiership and built a squad capable of challenging for a title on a regular basis.
Tate said the ability to turn outstanding players into superstars and to transform honest toilers into elite NRL performers was a trait Green had mastered, in much the same way as Melbourne mentor Craig Bellamy.
"Greeny is getting a deserved reputation, no matter where you are at in your career, for making you a better player and that is a Bellyache trait," Tate said.
"One of my own regrets is not having long enough under Greeny. In that year I had with him I learned a lot, and that was at the back end of my career. He absolutely makes you a better footballer."
Last year Green helped big guns Jason Taumalolo and Michael Morgan take their own games to new heights, but Tate said it was the way the Cowboys coach lifted the games of solid performers such as Kane Linnett, Scott Bolton and John Asiata that defined him.
"To take the team where he did last year without its stars was pretty darn amazing," Tate said
"He is a wonderful coach, and like Bellamy he keeps it simple, gives everyone a job and if you don't do it you are asked questions.
"Last year Greeny had to ask a lot of those guys to play above themselves and they did. I think that is a good indication of a great coach.
"He asks a lot of them, but they produce for him. He has turned those guys you mentioned into, not superstars, but bloody good NRL players."
Who should replace Bennett, and when, is a major talking point in Brisbane but not everyone agrees that Green should be the man.
In his NRL.com column last week, Steve Renouf said assistant coach Kevin Walters should get the gig in 2020.
"Kevin Walters is sitting there, ready to go," Renouf said.
"He was a major part of building the Broncos culture. He won five grand finals for the club as a player. He is a career coach who has done his apprenticeship. He ticks all the boxes."