Players tell Sea Eagles they want Cartwright to be coach

Manly players have approached the club to throw their support behind John Cartwright to replace Trent Barrett as coach when he is expected to leave at the end of the season.

The players are slowly coming to terms with the forthcoming departure of Barrett and were given an honest update of the club's predicament by chief executive Lyall Gorman during the week.

Gorman met a number of Manly's senior players to discuss the quandary the club now finds itself in, with a number of those players pushing for Cartwright to move from assistant into the head coach role.

Cartwright recently extended his contract at the club for a further two seasons despite the uncertainty around Barrett's future.

While Manly fans have thrown their support behind a potential Geoff Toovey or Des Hasler return to Brookvale, it has been knocked on the head by chairman Scott Penn in a NewsCorp report.

It's no secret the senior players are huge admirers of Barrett and are disappointed in the way recent events have unfolded, with skipper Daly Cherry-Evans expressing his dismay in the post-match press conference after last Friday's dramatic collapse on home turf to lose to the Titans.

It's part of the reason Gorman organised the meeting with the club's big-name players, as the Sea Eagles look to avoid a player revolt over the handling of the Barrett situation.

Manly fullback Tom Trbojevic has also backed Cartwright as Barrett's successor.

"We love Baz and it's unfortunate the situation we find ourselves in," Trbojevic said.

"But if he isn't here we have someone at the club ready to take control. The boys have a lot of respect for Carty. He understands what we've been through and has a great relationship with everyone here. He's got my support to coach this club if Baz isn't here."

Cartwright, who has also worked as an assistant with NSW at different stages in recent years, was the inaugural coach of the Gold Coast Titans, winning 45 per cent of his matches over eight years, including two finals series appearances.