St Helens coach Justin Holbrook gave his reaction to the news that Wigan counterpart Shaun Wane would be leaving at the end of the season.
The current top two in Super League are expected to be fighting on all fronts for the silverware up for grabs in 2018.
Both have been making major moves off the pitch too, with Saints dealing with speculation surrounding the future of Ben Barba but also announcing the high profile capture of Kevin Naiqama this week.
Wigan, meanwhile, followed up the news that Sam Tomkins was leaving for Catalans by announcing the signing of the currently banned Zak Hardaker, while a new deal for highly rated centre Oliver Gildart was also revealed.
The shock news came at the start of this week though, that Wane would depart at the season’s end.
Holbrook said: “I was surprised to be honest. He’s done a great job over the years and he’s done a great job this year.”
Asked, tongue in cheek by mischievous radio reporter Steve Manning, if he would be interested in the job, Holbrook laughed: “It would be tough! There’d be unhappy Wigan fans and unhappy St Helens fans.
“They’re a great a club, our two clubs are the best there is. They’re a fantastic club.”
Unsurprisingly, Holbrook hasn’t been given any odds for taking over the Wigan job by Super League sponsors Betfred.
Wigan legend Shaun Edwards is currently favourite to succeed Wane, while a raft of current and former players are also fancied, including Paul Deacon, Trent Barrett and Sean O’Loughlin.