Stephen Kearney quits Storm to become Eels coach

Melbourne Storm assistant coach has today told the club that he wishes to leave his position in order to assume the head coaching position at the Parramatta Eels.

The Eels, who earlier sacked previous coach Daniel Anderson, had previously made it known that they were chasing Kearney heavily.

Kearney has been the understudy, or assistant coach under Storm coach Craig Bellamy, and is highly regarded my many at the Storm club as a top-line coach.

Parramatta Chief Executive Paul Osborne is yet to confirm if Kearney is in fact coach, but that fact seems almost inevitable.

“There’s two great teams playing in a grand final tomorrow,” said Osborne

Kearney has one major achievement to his name as a head coach, having won the Rugby League World Cup in 2008 with New Zealand.

“As expected, Kearney today informed club officials he would be taking up the vacant Parramatta Eels coaching role in 2011,” a Storm statement read

A replacement for Kearney is imminent, and should come very soon according to Melbourne Storm CEO Ron Gauci. Storm backs coach Brad Arthur is also set to jump ship and follow Kearney to the Eels.

“Stephen has been a great servant of the Melbourne Storm both as a player and a coach,” Gauci said.

“The entire club is greatly appreciative of the role Stephen has played here and the life membership he received just last month was evident of the respect he holds here.

“We were always aware that, at some point in his career, Stephen would want to take the step up to a head coaching role and we had been planning accordingly.

“We are confident that we will be in a position shortly to publicly announce a replacement for Stephen.”

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