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Kirk thrilled at Roos staying until 2011

By Adrian Warren 04/10/2008 03:34:06 PM Comments (0)

Inspirational Sydney co-captain Brett Kirk has hailed the contract extension of coach Paul Roos as fantastic news for the AFL club.

Already the longest-serving coach in the club's history, Roos revealed he had committed himself to the Swans until the end of the 2011 season.

Roos, who replaced Rodney Eade halfway through the 2002 season, agreed to another two-year term beyond the end of his current contract next year.

"It's fantastic for the footy club. He has been a super coach and a super mentor to me," said Kirk, who finished second behind fellow midfielder Jarrad McVeigh in the club's best and fairest award on Friday night.

"I think with a young list coming through he's going to be great for the kids."

With general manager Andrew Ireland, who also masterminded Brisbane's success earlier in the decade contracted until 2012, Sydney have secured the services of arguably their two most important off-field personnel.

"We think that under Andrew Ireland and Paul Roos we have significantly rebuilt our club since 2002," Sydney chairman Richard Colless said.

"In this industry, stability is not everything, but it's a big part."

Roos said he had talked to Ireland, Colless, some of his assistant coaches, players and his family before committing to a contract extension.

"I spoke to a lot of people over the last couple of weeks just to make sure I was the right person to do the job," Roos said.

With a core of players aged in their 30s including Kirk, fullback Leo Barry and key forwards Barry Hall and Michael O'Loughlin, Roos said the Swans faced a transitional year in 2009.

However, he felt the club would still be competitive and the likes of Kirk and Barry had finished the year well, while younger players like McVeigh, Paul Bevan and Jarred Moore had also performed well.

"I see a really bright future for the club over the next five years," Roos said.

"I think we will go into next year with a lot of confidence, but equally when you have an older team sometimes players drop off pretty quickly.

"We will continue to play kids with the possibility at some point next year, we might need to look at rebuilding."

Roos has guided Sydney to the finals in each of his six full seasons, breaking their 72-year-old premiership drought in 2005 and getting to them to the grand final again the following year.

Although optimistic about Sydney's future, he was wary of predicting a similar level of success in the coming years.

"We've obviously had a very successful period, to think we are going to go into the next six years and play in two grand finals and all those sorts of things, it's probably not going to happen," Roos said.

"But equally I think the excitement of next year with the group we've got, the future is really bright."

Roos said Sydney were "really keen" to bring speedy Essendon midfielder Andrew Lovett to the club and suggested a decision on whether out-of-favour forward Nick Davis would be retained would be made by the end of trade week next week.

The Swans should know by Sunday whether out-of-contract forward Ryan O'Keefe will accept the club's offer or demand a trade.

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