Macqueen tipped to step away from coaching - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Macqueen tipped to step away from coaching

Guy Hand 13/06/2011 05:00:26 PM Comments (0)

Rod Macqueen is expected to confirm he will stand down next week as Melbourne Rebels head coach.

Macqueen was saying little on Monday on what his Super Rugby future held.

But he confirmed there would be an announcement on his future next week - just days after he coaches the Rebels in their final match this season against the Western Force on Friday night in Melbourne.

Insiders suggest Macqueen will move away from day-to-day coaching, but remain involved in some capacity with the Rebels.

"We've had a succession plan in place from day one, and it's something we weren't likely to discuss until the end of the season," Macqueen said.

"This week, we really want to concentrate on the last game.

"But next week, we will be announcing exactly what's happening."

Assistant Damien Hill looms as the frontrunner to succeed Macqueen - especially if the succession plan the ex-Wallabies' coach speaks about is followed to the letter.

Macqueen spent 18 months establishing the Rebels in Melbourne, building a squad, then steering them to three wins in 15 matches this season.

But despite the best performance by a Super Rugby expansion club, they will finish with the wooden spoon - having lost their past eight games.

"We've got a very good presence now in Melbourne. Surveys suggest we've done a lot of things right off the field," Macqueen said.

"From our perspective now, we have to take what we learned this year and put it on the paddock for next year."

"It's been a great challenge. I came here with my eyes open and what hasn't let me down is the Melbourne public and the way they've embraced rugby."

Macqueen said defence would be a key area to work on for next season, and the club would benefit from having had a year to bed down before beginning a pre-season on similar footing to other clubs.

"We haven't done as well on the field as we would have liked ... (2012) will be a totally different year," Macqueen said.

"We'll be able to be a lot more normal in our approach than the other sides have been able to do.

"We had to start from scratch this year, learn our different ways of playing, our moves, our calls, our structures, get to know each other.

"All of that's been done now."

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