The expectation on him to take the Roosters to premiership glory, or at the very least a finals series in 2013 is high – but new Roosters coach Trent Robinson has a plan to get the best out of former Bulldog Sonny Bill Williams for next year, to help achieve that.
Robinson, who is still in the South of France coaching ESL side the Catalans Dragons, is best know for his tactical decisions as a coach, with the 2013 NRL coach opening up on his plans for SBW.
“We will need to find out what makes him tick and what motivates him,” Robinson said. “Sonny is a game changer – that is why he is coming back.
“He has shown that in two sports, three with boxing.
“It’s about how we can get the best out of him though player management. It’s about acclimatising him as quick as possible to our systems.
“I have spoken to the club about this – hopefully Sonny will sign on with us. I have (former NRL centre) Daryl Millard here at Catalans and he is good friends with Sonny.
“He says he is quite a good person. Sonny is a professional athlete to the extreme. I don’t want for him to come and do this and that. We will have our structures.
“It’s important I get to know Sonny.”
With former Roosters coach Brian Smith pushed out, due to rumours that he had rifts with some of the senior players, it is up to Robinson to rebuild the previously broken bridges.
“The players need some mental repair – they need a rest,” Robinson said. “There is always some damage after someone has been removed. There will be some hurt there for different people in different ways.
“It’s about understanding the players, coaching staff and administration. The repair will come at different stages for different people.
“There isn’t a blanket solution. I understand that and it will take time.”
If you have a good memory, you may remember Robinson’s career as a player, albeit a short one – he only played in 4 NRL games in total, and aged just 35, his appointment surprised many, given the speculation that Melbourne Storm coach Craig Bellamy was headed to Bondi.
“I haven’t played a lot of NRL so some people will be excited, others will be apprehensive and questioning. That is normal,” he said.
“It’s about identifying the different needs of players and staff and giving them confidence about what we are doing in 2013. It’s vital we give them leadership and direction.”
With the last five Roosters coaches being terminated before their contract runs out, Robinson knows the expectations that are placed on him, and he is well aware of the pressure.
“Nick has made that clear. Everyone knows that is what the Roosters are about,” Robinson said. “I’m conscious of that but it’s not daunting.
“My job is get success and improve the club and the players. “I coached there in 2010 so it was nice of Nick to give me a call and offer me the job.