Manly coach Trent Barrett has expressed his disappointment that chairman Scott Penn has publicly accused him of not acting in the spirit of the club.
Barrett addressed the media on Wednesday morning amid the uncertainty surrounding his tenure following Manly's disastrous 2018 Telstra Premiership campaign.
Penn, in a NewsCorp report, said he was deeply unhappy with how Barrett had acted and added the Sea Eagles were preparing for another coach to take over the reins in 2019.
The coach said he thought he had an agreement with club officials not to make any public comments about the contractual standoff and added he had fronted up to several media conferences where he had been measured with his words.
"I feel a bit disappointed with what was written," Barrett said.
"I want to honour what I said - that we wouldn't make public comment on it until the end of the season.
"I'm not going to say too much on it but again the understanding was, and I've had to front up to some pretty heavy press conferences over the last month about it, and have declined to comment and tried to do things with a lot of dignity - it's tough for me to stand here today and not say anything at all."
Barrett said he had not spoken to Penn about his comments.
Asked about Penn's assertion he had not acted in the spirit of the club, he replied: "Anything I say is going to be pretty controversial today so I'm not going to fall into that."
"It's been difficult and certainly not something that you want to go through. It's not just us it's the club and the players, and your family.
"[I'm] just disappointed that we didn't make a public statement for a long time and I've had to sit here with cameras in my face for a while and I have done that.
"I've got the team in there again, I've got to prepare them for a game of footy tomorrow."
The Sea Eagles will be looking to salvage some pride at Campbelltown on Thursday night when they take on the Wests Tigers, who need to win to keep their flickering finals hopes alive.
"The players know exactly where I stand with them and I'm very proud of all the blokes in that dressing shed. They're terrific young men. They're my focus, I'm committed to them. My aim is just to win these next two games."
Manly finish the season with a trip to Suncorp Stadium next Sunday to face the Broncos.