Former Cronulla Sharks and Penrith Panthers coach John Lang could be signed to a coaching consultancy position at the South Sydney Rabbitohs as they look to snap their 2008 woeful results.
Lang, who took the Panthers to Premiership glory in 2003 is rumored to be recruited to the newly created advisory job to guide coach Jason Taylor, the Bunnies remaining on only 1 win for 2008 and missing a perfect chance to ambush Melbourne in Gosford on Saturday night even though they had 8 State of Origin players backing up.
“I’m not commenting about that,” John Lang said. “I’ve been linked to so many jobs in the last 18 months â€¦ I’m sick of it.”
A previous Dally-M award winner, Lang goes way back with Souths director Shane Richardson, the two forging their friendship which goes back to the 80s, when they got together at Brisbane Easts before working together again at Cronulla and the Panthers.
Lang hasn’t picked up a clipboard since Penrith controversially booted him and installed former Canberra man Matthew Elliott at the end of the 2006 season, while Taylor would have the final say – Lang could be used as a sounding board for tough decisions and provide advice to the under-fire Taylor.
Making Jason Taylor and the Souths players jobs even harder are reports of the arguments between co-owners Peter Holmes a Court and Russell Crowe and now worries about the clubs viability. While Holmes a Court could walk away, you get the feeling the passionate Crowe would do whatever it takes to make Souths a success.
Crowe’s publicist, Grant Van Den Berg, said the Hollywood star would not be commenting, while Holmes a Court didn’t want to talk when asked for comment yesterday – however it is believed the two high profile men did speak yesterday.
Their relationship and worries of the clubs future after David Gallops’ recently coments about the club are certain to be raised at a Souths board meeting tonight.
Holmes a Court’s comments last week that he could not confirm the club’s survival have set off fears he wants to pull the pin on his bankrolling of the struggling club..
Some of South Sydney’s high-profile supporters are believed to have thought about talking to Souths Juniors this week about helping the club financially if Holmes a Court and Crowe couldn’t bail the club out of the financial situation.
But Souths Juniors president Keith McGraw, who walked away from the football club last year over Holmes a Court’s controversial proposal to remove poker machines from the Souths leagues club, killed off any thoughts of this happening.
“We are in no position to help other than what we do already,” McGraw said. “We’re in the same boat as everyone else because of the poker machine tax. Apart from the $2.8 million we put into junior league in the area, there’s nothing more we can do. We’re not in a position of strength to help them.”
Former Souths Juniors president Henry Morris, who was a partner on the ticket alongside former chairman George Piggins opposing Holmes a Court and Crowe taking a 75 per cent stake in the club, said the club’s demise was “disturbing”.
“I’m not into bagging the club when it is down, but these guys were going to be the saviours,” Morris, who is still considered by many as a key powerbroker behind the scenes, said. “They were going to come in on their white horse and save the club.”
Morris said he feared for the club’s future with Holmes a Court and Crowe having majority ownership. “We should never had allowed them to buy 75 per cent,” Morris said. “We should have allowed them to buy 49 per cent and the other 51 per cent should have stayed in the hands of the members. They bought this great club for $3m and now they cannot guarantee the club’s future.”