MANLY coach Trent Barrett has decided to cancel Mad Monday celebrations in favour of end-of-season reviews.
The Sea Eagles’ 2018 season officially ended on Sunday afternoon following a 48-16 thrashing at the hands of a rampaging Brisbane outfit who are heading into the finals with plenty of momentum.
It was a disappointing end to the year for the Barrett’s side who have lurched from one off-field issue to the next.
Their season started to take a turn for the worst following the side’s loss to Gold Coast in Gladstone back in Round 5 which led to the Jackson Hastings saga and his eventual release.
Then came the salary cap sanctions and ongoing speculation over Barrett’s coaching future after reports he’d tendered his resignation mid-season.
The Sea Eagles flew home from Brisbane on Sunday night after their loss and the playing group will be expected to front up on Monday with Barrett to conduct individual player reviews.
“They still don’t know who’s coaching next year,” The Daily Telegraph’s Phil Rothfield told Controversy Corner.
“Trent Barrett is still under contract, despite him resigning, until July next year.
“He has decided for once — he was accused in the newspaper last week of spending too much time in the pub with John Cartwright and the players — he’s decided to get fair dinkum and he’s doing a review (Monday).
“They finished one win off the wooden spoon.
“They need a review, they need to find out what’s going on.
“Let them have a beer any other time.”
After his side’s loss at Suncorp Stadium, Barrett said he wanted his future sorted sooner rather than later.
“Now the season is finished we will be able to get our heads together and say something,” he said.
“It has been a distraction, I will admit that, but the players have been very professional and they did prepare well this week so that’s why this loss has been so disappointing.
“But the club and the fans need it resolved quickly.”
Barrett said he couldn’t shed any more light on his future.
Barrett has reportedly fallen out with club management and his assistant John Cartwright is tipped to take over.
Manly left arguably their worst until last on Sunday, blown away in an eight-tries-to-three loss.
It left them with just seven wins for the season — their worst tally since 2003 when they were reinstated into the NRL.
Manly finished with three-straight losses — the second time it’s happened in Barrett’s three seasons at the helm.
“That was a really bad way to finish,” Barrett said.
“They were very good the Broncos but we probably didn’t let them earn anything in the first half.”
Manly skipper Daly Cherry-Evans admitted it had been tough finishing the season with a question mark over their 2019 coach.
“It’s not ideal but we are professional. There wasn’t a week where we didn’t go in focused or prepared,” he said.
Barrett tried to leave what may be his final media conference as Manly mentor with a message of hope for fans.
“The Manly club is a great club with a proud history,” he said.
“We had one of those seasons.
“But we’ve got a core group of really good players with the club’s best interests at heart.
“If we can fill some gaps around them and get the mix right, it will be a successful team.”