Trent Barrett doesn’t know if he’ll remain at Parramatta after missing top job

by Pelican Press
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Trent Barrett doesn’t know if he’ll remain at Parramatta after missing top job

Parramatta caretaker coach Trent Barrett is yet to talk to club officials about his future at the club in the wake of Jason Ryles’ appointment to take over in 2025.

Barrett, who took over when Brad Arthur was sacked following a Magic Round loss to Melbourne, has spoken to Ryles, a former teammate and a “good friend”, since his appointment was confirmed on Monday but didn’t reveal if those talks were around a position on his coaching staff.

Ryles will see out his role as assistant to Craig Bellamy at the Melbourne Storm before assuming control of the Eels and Barrett said his own future was not his immediate focus with a Saturday clash on the Gold Coast front of mind.

Barrett, who conceded he was “disappointed: to miss out on the Parramatta role, having received ringing endorsements from star players including Mitchell Moses, said coaching was all “I’ve ever done really” and he wanted to stay involved in the NRL.

“I’ve always felt very welcome here, and it’s a great club. This year has been really difficult and those conversations we can have with the club over the next few weeks,” he said on Thursday.

“They have been very open and honest with me through the whole process. My main focus is the team and I still have a job to do here for another few months and games to win.

Camera IconTrent Barrett is unsure of his future at Parramatta. Jonathan Ng Credit: News Corp Australia

“I think it’s exciting for Jason. It’s a good opportunity and a great club. Obviously, I was disappointed but that’s the game we are in and I’ve been in it for a long time.

“I’m glad it’s done now so we can just focus on the footy and move forward.”

Barrett answered “yes” when asked if he could work with Ryles as an assistant because he loved coaching and being involved in football clubs for reasons beyond wins and losses.

“It’s all I’ve ever done really,” he said.

“We’ve got another example this week of giving a kid a debut in young Lorenzo (Mulitalo). That makes coaching really worthwhile when you can do that and have an effect on people’s lives that way. They are the things that bring you back to coaching and why you fall in love with it.

“It’s been a difficult year but we still have eight or nine weeks to go and we have to improve, but we just have to get on with things with the remainder of the season to see out.”

Mulitalo will make his NRL debut against the Gold Coast Titans in a team alongside fellow rookies Blaize Talagi, Matt Arthur, Jake Tago and Charlie Guymer with a raft of senior Eels injured.

Despite the Eels sitting second last on the ladder with just four wins, Barrett insisted Ryles was inheriting a “good squad” that didn’t need mass changes to be successful.

“We’ve got a really good roster, most of the players are here again next year,” he said, knowing NSW Origin centre Zac Lomax was also on his way.

“A little bit of luck would be nice. We are missing a lot of players this week.

“When we are at full strength we have turned in some really good performances.

“This week is an opportunity for a really young side to go to the Gold Coast and get a win, that’s what I’m focusing on.”



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