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Former England boss signs $3 million deal in new head coach role

Wayne Bennett set to be appointed South Sydney Rabbitohs head coach for the second time

According to reports, former England boss Wayne Bennett has agreed a $3 million deal that would see him become the new head coach for South Sydney Rabbitohs.

After a poor start to the season, seeing Souths sit at the foot of the NRL Premiership table, Jason Demetriou was sacked from his head coach role at the end of last month.

Since then, they have lost both games, against St George Illawarra Dragons and Penrith Panthers, and remain bottom.

However, there’s already some positivity for next season, as St Helens star Lewis Dodd has signed a deal to join them on a long-term deal next season.

Bennett’s deal has not been signed, but Rabbitohs officials flew to Queensland on Monday to work out the terms.

He is expected to soon officially sign the deal that would see him start as head coach for the start of next season.

It’s worth noting, however, that he’s got history of last-minute changes in his decision making, going back on verbal agreements to join Souths’ city-rivals Sydney Roosters in the past as well as St George Illawarra.

There’s still some doubt over the deal

Wayne Bennett

Credit: Imago Images

Wayne Bennett has indeed already cast some doubt over the deal with comments today.

He told News Corp: “I have met with Souths, we had some preliminary talks and we agreed to come back next Monday after Magic Round is over and finalise it.

“Look at what happened with David Fifita. People said he was done at the Roosters, but he is not going to the Roosters is he?”

“South Sydney are up here for Magic Round so they will stay back a day or two and we’ll meet again. I’m not going anywhere until I sign a contract.”

The Sydney Roosters shared a statement yesterday as David Fifita, who had a verbal agreement to join the side for next year, had “expressed doubt about his decision”, causing the club to withdraw their offer to him.

The Tongan international’s situation may well cause Souths to exercise caution.

Currently, Bennett is in the final year of his deal at fellow NRL side The Dolphins.

Widely seen as one of the greatest head coaches of the game, the 74-year-old has won more NRL Premierships than any other coach, winning six with the Brisbane Bronos and one with St George Illawarra.

He also came close in his previous stint at South Sydney, losing in the 2021 Grand Final to Penrith Panthers.

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