Next Titans coach: NRL.com experts' view

The Gold Coast Titans have parted ways with Garth Brennan, so who should be the next full-time coach of the club? The NRL.com experts have their say.

NRL.com's experts view

Brett Kimmorley (Former NSW halfback)

I think Craig Bellamy should coach the Titans. The NRL and the Titans need to go all out to make this happen. Gold Coast need to get it right this time. Bellamy might leave the Storm early and head up there. He would give credibility to the brand, institute discipline and he knows how to build rosters. If that doesn't work out I wouldn't be surprised to see Adrian Lam get the job and work with Mal Meninga. 

Steve Renouf (Maroons legend)

Ben and Shane Walker should get the job. They are dynamic and will add a much needed freshen-up to the club and its players. They also would work well with whoever is overseeing the footy side of things at Titans.

Jamie Soward (Former NSW five-eighth)

Anthony Griffin or Craig Fitzgibbon. Griffin got rid of me at Penrith but I was at the back end of my career, Anthony had come in with directives and we just didn't see eye-to-eye. But I've actually worked with him all year this year and we think a lot around the same lines. He's a Queensland guy and a disciplinarian that can help rebuild that club. Fitzgibbon is Trent Robinson's right hand man at the Roosters and comes from a club that sets the standard in the NRL.

Tony Webeck (NRL.com reporter)

Right now the Titans need a coach with NRL experience and a hard edge who is prepared to invest in youth and build a playing culture built on effort. For those reasons I think Anthony Griffin ticks the majority of the boxes required to set the Titans straight.

Margie McDonald (NRL.com senior reporter)

Craig Bellamy longs to have a beach-side home; he has family on the Gold Coast; he's committed to Melbourne for two more years. He's always said he'd retire, but could be lured north for sunshine, salt water and really challenging assignment. He's only 60 now. He knows Mal Meninga well from Raiders days. He just needs the Titans to appoint a short-term coach to hold the fort, or build the fort up a bit, before Craig's arrival. Then the pair could work together to continue the reinvigoration of the club. The salary cap would be fixed by end of 2021 and players would be lining up to sign on. 

Corey Rosser (NRL.com reporter)

Geoff Toovey. Bringing in a highly-rated young coach didn't work this time around and I see little point in the Gold Coast sticking to that strategy. They need stability and Toovey would bring that, along with relationships with a number of current players which could help with recruitment. 

Paul Suttor (NRL.com editor)

Brian Smith. The veteran coach has been off the NRL scene for a while but he has a remarkable record of dragging teams up from the cellar into finals contention, unfortunately without ever winning a title. He'd be the ideal type of no-nonsense mentor the Titans need to get off the treadmill of mediocrity they've been stuck on for several years.

Maria Tsialis (Big League editor)

Kevin Walters is definitely still in the running for the position - though he says he won't apply - and I think he's a natural fit for the club. They need a coach with aura, a Queenslander who genuinely feels a connection to the area and fans, and someone with experience.

Chris Kennedy (NRL.com reporter)

I don't really expect it to happen but I'd love to see Ben and Shane Walker get the gig. They'll bring a fresh approach, plenty of energy and enthusiasm and no shortage of footy nous and have done some great things at Ipswich in the Intrust Super Cup.

Mary Konstantopoulos (Ladies Who League)

There have been plenty of suggestions about former NRL coaches bandied about for this role like Kevin Walters, Mal Meninga, Geoff Toovey and even Matthew Elliot, but why not give someone new a try? Craig Fitzgibbon has been under the tutelage of Trent Robinson and would hopefully bring similar levels of discipline to a team that sorely needs it right now.

Lone Scout (NRL Fantasy expert)

Some of the most successful recent NRL coaches came to the role having already played first grade in Australia and experienced success coaching in the Super League. Michael Maguire and Trent Robinson did it and led their NRL clubs to premierships, Nathan Brown did it and rebuilt the Knights into contenders. Former Roosters assistant Justin Holbrook fits the bill, coaching St Helens for the last three seasons including 20 wins from 23 games this season, and it's no surprise he's in the frame for the Titans role. 

Joel Gould (NRL.com reporter)

Ben and Shane Walker are the right fit to coach the Gold Coast Titans to success in the future. The Ipswich Jets co-coaches were close to being appointed in 2017 and have the man management skills, footballing nous and valuable experience at running a club from the top to bottom in the Intrust Super Cup for the past decade. The brothers learned plenty from former mentor Wayne Bennett and would bring that to the table at the Titans.

Zac Bailey (NRL.com reporter)

Tim Sheens should take over the Titans next year with a succession plan to replace him with Craig Bellamy in 2021/22. Alongside Mal Meninga, Sheens's old-school, hard-nosed approach would change the culture of the club and put it back on the right path. Bellamy is off-contract next year and is the ideal candidate to take over from Sheens. Ideally, the Storm extend him for a year to give Sheens two years in charge. Bellamy is the best coach in the game and is worth every cent.

Alicia Newton (NRL.com reporter)

Anthony Griffin. The Titans need an old-school mentality instilled in their club and Griffin is the man to deliver that. His record at Penrith was admirable with even his exit questioned. Will rattle the cages of several players at the club that need to be put on notice.

Brad Walter (NRL.com senior reporter)

Most people consider Ben and Shane Walker untried coaches but the brothers have overseen more than 200 games in charge of Ipswich Jets in Queensland's Intrust Super Cup so have experience of what it takes to coach a club as opposed to a team. The Walker brothers have are highly regarded and have an innovative coaching style that would be  like a breath of fresh air in the NRL.

Brett Keeble (NRL.com reporter)

Garth Brennan should still be coaching the Titans, but anyway. Considering the team’s lack of success under a rookie NRL coach, and the club’s lack of support for the rookie coach they just sacked, the Titans should be leaning towards an experienced mentor like Tim Sheens or Geoff Toovey to oversee the next chapter.

Tanisha Stanton (NRL.com reporter)

The Titans require a coach with experience to come in and work some magic. Anthony Griffin is known for developing juniors players and with the Titans in the process of rebuilding, that would be the place to start.

Troy Whittaker (NRL.com reporter)

Tim Sheens. This isn’t a job for a rookie coach and Sheens has the experience and nous to turn the Titans around.

Michael Chammas (NRL.com chief reporter)

The Titans want someone who has experienced the way things work at different NRL clubs, and there's no better fit than Justin Holbrook. He's worked at the Bulldogs, Dragons and Roosters - and now has led St Helens to the top of the Super League ladder. 

 

The views in this article do not necessarily express the opinions of the NRL, ARLC, NRL clubs or state associations.