Manly in talks to go back to the future with Des Hasler

Manly are poised to head back to the future by reuniting with two-time premiership-winning coach Des Hasler.

In yet another spectacular twist to the Sea Eagles coaching situation, Hasler has reportedly been sounded out to return on a long-term deal and replace Trent Barrett.

Hasler is overseas and, according to a Channel Nine report, has already repaired his relationship with Manly owners the Penn family.

In discussions: Des Hasler is in the frame to return to Manly.

In discussions: Des Hasler is in the frame to return to Manly.Credit:Steve Christo

The 57-year-old won the second of his titles with the northern beaches club in 2011, only to fall out with the owners and the board over ''serious breaches of his contract'', which related to claims he had tried to entice staff and players to follow him to Canterbury in 2013.

Sea Eagles boss Lyall Gorman told Fairfax Media on Friday night: "Des is in discussions along with several others, but there is still plenty of work to do there.''


Manly are yet to work out a proper severance package for Barrett, while his assistant John Cartwright was viewed as the short-priced favourite to take over when pre-season training resumed on November 5.

Cartwright reiterated his desire to become head coach just this week and told Fairfax Media it was comforting he also had the backing of the senior players.

Skipper Daly Cherry-Evans and Tom and Jake Trbojevic will play for Australia on Saturday evening against New Zealand.

Michael Maguire rejected the job, Neil Henry was never approached and Jason Taylor never interested.

Hasler, Cartwright and another club great, Geoff Toovey, appear to be on the short-list.

The 57-year-old Hasler was axed by Canterbury last year before he took them to court, claiming he had already signed an extension. The coach and club settled out of court in May this year.

Despite Hasler being out of the country, the Nine report suggested his agent George Mimis had ramped up discussions this week, with the coach even asking several close staff to not sign elsewhere given the chance they could join him on the northern beaches next month.

Manly had a season from hell, which included salary cap breaches, player fallouts and a woeful finish on the ladder, despite having three of the best players in the competition in Cherry-Evans and the local Trbojevic brothers.

The trio remained committed to the club and vowed not to walk, despite the endless negative headlines that have made the one proud club one of the laughing stocks of the competition.

Christian covers rugby league for The Sydney Morning Herald.

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