Rumour Mill: Former Super League man sacked by struggling NRL club

Aaron Bower

2RJJ8CR Sydney, Australia. 23rd Aug, 2023. Rabbitohs coach Jason Demetriou waits to address media during a South Sydney Rabbitohs NRL press conference with CEO Blake Solly, at USANA Rabbitohs Centre, in Sydney, Wednesday, August 23, 2023. Sam Burgess' time at South Sydney is over after the assistant coach left training early on Wednesday morning. (AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts) NO ARCHIVING Credit: Australian Associated Press/Alamy Live News

Jason Demetriou has reportedly been sacked as head coach of South Sydney Rabbitohs, according to reports in Australia.

The former Wakefield Trinity player has been under immense pressure in the early stages of the new NRL season, with Souths having won just one game all season long.

The club’s board held two separate meetings on Tuesday to determine Demetriou’s future as head coach, and reports have now emerged online from Down Under suggesting that his fate has been sealed, and he will be sacked effective immediately.

“It’s not easy, but it is what it is, it’s a big club, we’re not performing, so questions have to be asked, I understand that,” Demetriou said when he was confronted by reporters after training on Tuesday.

“I respect that. The boys have been outstanding, it’s never been an issue. They’re tight, they’re a tight group. We’re battling with injuries at the moment, we’ve got half the squad missing and they keep turning up and they’ll turn up on Thursday night as well.”

The Souths board met on Tuesday morning, something Demetriou admitted he was aware of, but then bizarrely agreed to a second board meeting later in the day after the players and coaching staff had left. And it appears as though that meeting is the one that sealed his fate.

Demetriou could now be replaced by another familiar face to Super League supporters: former Leeds Rhinos coach David Furner. He was installed as an assistant to Demetriou only earlier this month, but could now find himself in interim charge for Thursday night’s game against all-conquering NRL champions Penrith.

As for Demetriou, his availability will undoubtedly lead to speculation that Hull FC could make a play for his services. That, however, seems incredibly unlikely at this stage.

Souths have also been heavily linked with a move for St Helens scrum-half Lewis Dodd for 2025.

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