You have skipped the navigation, tab for page content
Rabbitohs coach Wayne Bennett.

The feud over the coach swapping arrangements between Wayne Bennett and Anthony Seibold has only reached a ceasefire – there is more to come as Bennett hasn't told his side of the story yet.

In his first day at his fourth NRL club, the 68-year-old Bennett kept his powder dry on when he would divulge more details, and perhaps the reasons why he was sacked by the Brisbane Broncos with one year left on his contract to join South Sydney.

"When I'm ready. I'm not ready yet. You'll just have to hang around and wait," he told a large group of reporters and members of the public outside the Rabbitohs dressing sheds.

In almost the same breath Bennett said he "was happy to be sacked" meaning that he was never going to walk out on his players and staff unless he was pushed out the door.

Bennett said the publication of Seibold's grievances in a Sunday article published in News Corp newspapers was not central in his sacking on that same day.

Bennett welcomed by Sam Burgess

He also said he didn't need to refute any of Seibold's allegations that he had been talking to Souths players and interfering in the 2019 season preparations at Redfern when he had stated publicly that he wanted to stay with Brisbane next year.

"No… all good," when asked on Tuesday if he wanted to respond to anything Seibold said.

He said he did approach a few Rabbitohs as the request of football manager Shane Richardson as they were either coming off contract (Robert Jennings) or were still under contract (Alex Johnston) and Bennett was the long-term coach.  

"I may well have referenced [2019] in those discussions but if I did it wasn't because I was coming here to coach straight away because I didn't know that," Bennett said, declining to talk about being sacked by voicemail because he was not near his telephone on Sunday at lunchtime.  

"I'm not here to discuss that today – I'm here to talk about South Sydney and that's what I'll do – that can wait for another day."

But he did want to get across the dilemma he found himself in – being the future coach of Souths but wanting to stay at the Broncos out of loyalty to his staff and players.

"I'm pleased someone is finally getting the message. You've been a bit slow guys but you're finally getting it now," Bennett said.

"I've been a team member all of my life. I live 'team'; I talk 'team'; and some of my team have been isolated and cut out.

"And I couldn't walk out on them."

Wayne Bennett at Rabbitohs training.
Wayne Bennett at Rabbitohs training. ©

Contrary to media reports that said Bennett would bring staff like his assistant coach Jason Demetriou and high performance chief Jeremy Hickmans to Redfern Oval, Bennett said that was never part of the talks with Souths as they had football staff under contract already.

"That was a bit of a myth actually. I want to clear it up for those guys up there who have been told to go gardening for a week," Bennett said on Tuesday.

"There's four of them that have been sidelined for a week – told to just go away and their futures will be decided next week."

Bennett's message for Rabbitohs supporters

Now Bennett has to decide players' futures.

"I think he'll be here," he said of Johnston. "I'm not so sure about [Robert Jennings] as I'm not totally up to date on him.

"[Greg Inglis] is not my first choice at fullback. I want to talk to GI where he wants to play, where he thinks the team will benefit most from his position.

"He's one of the great players in our game. So I don't like telling those guys where they have to play when they've given so much. I want them to be happy where they play. I put Darius (Boyd) in the centres this year and he was happy to do that because it's what the club needed.

"I'm sure Greg will be in the same boat. But I need to talk to him first."

Bennett was on a million-dollar-plus per year deal at the Broncos but again was content to not talk about his legal options in seeking a full pay-out. The Broncos said in a statement on Sunday that those matters would remain confidential.

"But I keep reading things in the paper about it so someone must be leaking something somewhere," Bennett said. "But I'll stay confidential."

He reiterated that much had gone on "behind the scenes which I was not always privy to and which was never at my instigation" when it came to his sacking.

"But I wasn't unfamiliar with what could happen," he said.

"I'm pleased to be here and pleased I came here on my terms in the sense I didn't have to leave the Broncos – I was asked to leave, sacked, whatever terminology you want to use, it doesn't worry me."

Acknowledgement of Country

National Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

Premier Partner

Media Partners

Major Partners

View All Partners