Richard Agar stands down as Leeds Rhinos coach

Drew Darbyshire
Richard Agar Leeds Rhinos

Richard Agar has taken the decision to stand down from his role as Leeds Rhinos head coach with immediate effect – but will have a future role at the club.

Assistant coach Jamie Jones-Buchanan will be the new interim head coach. He will work alongside Sean Long and performance director Richard Hunwicks.

The Rhinos endured a poor start to the 2022 Super League season, winning just one from their first six games.

Agar said: “When I first took on the head coach’s job three years ago, I agreed with Kevin Sinfield and Gary Hetherington that I would do so on the basis that I could help take the team forward.

“I agreed a six-month rolling contract and I was happy to continue whilst ever we were making progress. However, I don’t feel like I am having the impact I would hope to on the squad.

“I am proud of our record over the last three years. The club was in a tough position when I took over. We battled against relegation before facing the unprecedented challenges of Covid and an injury ravaged squad last season.

“On the field, we won the Challenge Cup at Wembley, reached the play-offs in the last two seasons and saw the emergence of a number of highly promising young players.

“I really believe we have a strong squad who have the potential to achieve this year. They are working hard in training every day. But unfortunately, this has not materialised in to results and ultimately that responsibility rests with me.”


Richard Agar to have future role at Leeds Rhinos

The Rhinos have announced that Agar will have a future role at the club, which will be confirmed at a later date.

Leeds chief executive Gary Hetherington said: “On behalf of everyone at the club, I would like to thank Richard for his outstanding effort as head coach of the club.

“Normally with teams in this position, it is easy to identify the causes of a down turn in form such as this but in our case it is a difficult one to solve.

“The teams preparation has been good each week. The spirit within the group has been strong throughout and our coaches and backroom staff have worked tirelessly to provide our players with excellent support.

“We started the season with what we believed was a very strong squad with an outstanding crop of talented young players. But we have simply not converted that into team performances.

“We do plan to appoint a new head coach and will apply a comprehensive recruitment process but there is no pre-determined timescale for this appointment.

“This Saturday we entertain Castleford Tigers at Headingley and the Challenge Cup offers another opportunity to get our season started. All our focus will be on this game and then St Helens the following week as we return to Super League action.

“Jamie Jones-Buchanan is excited about his new opportunity and I am sure he will bring the same passion, enthusiasm and expertise to this new role as he showed throughout his playing career.”

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