Sensational twist in Hasler’s Manly contract saga
Des Hasler's coaching future has taken a dramatic twist with the Manly Sea Eagles now closing in on a deal to keep him on the northern beaches.
Following months of protracted and complex negotiations, which had left the matter "unresolved" until as late as Sunday, Manly chief executive Stephen Humphreys has declared: "I now expect to finalise a new agreement for Des to remain at the Sea Eagles beyond this year."
But, as revealed by News Corp, the contract will contain performance-based clauses.
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It is expected Hasler and Manly will announce a new partnership sometime this week, once both parties agree on the final details.
There were plans for Manly to announce the renewal at the club's launch earlier this month before a late delay.
But News Corp can confirm a deal is imminent, with the extension set to span two years.
"The contract discussions have been longstanding, respectful and positive," Hasler's manager, George Mimis, said.
"The majority of the key terms were agreed late last year with the finer details added to a contract earlier this year.
"Nothing has changed and we are on track for completion soon."
Asked to confirm performance clauses have been included, Mimis said: "Des's contract is confidential - like every other contract - but it is fair to say that every coach's contract in the NRL has a performance criteria in it. This isn't something new.
"It has been so, so close for a long time. The goal was to have it announced at the season launch a couple of weeks ago but here we are, it may now be this week."
Sea Eagles players on Monday rallied around their coach, who finds himself under immediate pressure after a 46-4 round one loss to the Sydney Roosters.
Asked about the News Corp report which revealed a standoff between his club and Hasler over a new contract, Manly forward Curtis Sironen said: "I spent the weekend worrying about my own job after what we dished up the other day. That's between Des and the club and hopefully it gets sorted out soon.
"It seems when you have losses, big ones, something always pops up like this, some sort of drama. None of that stuff has been spoken about by the playing group. We need to turn around our performance before we start worrying about that sort of stuff.
"Des gets you ready. He's a good coach who makes you accountable. It's nothing to do with his coaching."
Sea Eagles forward Jake Trbojevic added: "It's really unfair to put a performance like that on Des. The way he works, I've never seen anything like it. He is a great leader, his record speaks for itself."
Manly fullback Dylan Walker called on his club to re-sign Hasler.
"He has helped me, we can say that. He is a good mentor and a players' coach. He's got genuine care, I can't fault the man. He has always stood by my side and shown great faith in me," Walker said.
"As much as that is in the background, all we can do is train hard and try to win football games. I wish him all the best and hopefully something gets sorted. But we have to worry about our job."
Originally published as Sensational twist in Hasler's Manly contract saga