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Paul Rowley reveals if Leeds Rhinos have approached him to become head coach

Leeds Rhinos

Leeds Rhinos are currently dominating the headlines in Rugby League, following the departure of head coach, Rohan Smith. Smith left the club following a run of inconsistent results and, perhaps more importantly, disjointed performances, capped off by a humiliating defeat against Hull FC. 

Now, all of the talk is centred around who will take on the role of Smith’s replacement. Several high-profile names have been mentioned, including former NRL coaches Brad Arthur and Jason Demetriou. However, given Leeds’ Sporting Director’s connections with the Salford Red Devils, Paul Rowley is the name which seems to be gaining most traction.

Rowley appeared as the guest on the Sky Sports coverage of the Castleford Tigers versus Hull KR game at the Mend-a-Hose Jungle on Thursday night. Appearing with pundits, Brian Carney and Jon Wilkin, Rowley was inevitably asked about the links with the Leeds job.

Rowley provided an update on whether he has been in touch with the club about their vacant head coach’s role.

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Rowley reveals if Leeds Rhinos have approached him to become head coach

Credit: Imago Images

Rowley’s Salford side host St Helens on Sunday as they seek to maintain their challenge for a spot in the play-off places in Super League. Asked whether he had received an approach regarding the vacant Leeds job, Rowley stated that he had not been contacted. All of his focus is on preparing his side for their game against St Helens.

The Rhinos host the Leigh Leopards at Headingley on Friday in a game which will celebrate the life of Rob Burrow. Rowley believes their focus is on preparing for this occasion. Rowley said:

“No absolutely not. I think they’ve got a big week ahead. They’ve got a game tomorrow, they’ve got obviously an occasion tomorrow and I’ve got a big week myself preparing my team for St. Helens, and so there’s been absolutely no contacts at all.”

When asked whether he expected an approach from the Leeds Rhinos, Rowley said, whilst it is a privilege to be linked with any job, he did not expect any approach:

“I don’t expect anything. So it’s nice that I’m linked with any job, it’s a privilege and an honour. I don’t expect anything and yeah I’m looking forward to going training tomorrow.”

Rowley keen to stick to the facts amid speculation

Salford Red Devils coach Paul Rowley speaks to Sky Sports pundit and former Leeds Rhinos player Jamie Jones-Buchanan

Credit: Imago Images

Whilst Rowley initially stated his commitment to the Salford job for the remainder of the 2025, there was a caveat to his response. His commitment was based on the fact that he had not yet received an approach, however, he admitted that things change in life and that is impossible to know what would happen tomorrow.

However, he remained adamant that his focus was on preparing Salford for this weekend’s game. Rowley said.

“Absolutely, I’ve got no other reason not to. It would be a strange thing not to be able to say that. So, you know, tomorrow is a different day, the day after that’s a different day, and I can pose the same questions at you, the people who are filming us at this minute, that’s just life isn’t it?” Rowley stated.

“But I always learn to stick to the facts, and that’s what I was doing, and the facts remain, there’s been no discussions, and I’m committed to coaching my team against St. Helens at the weekend.”

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