Former Leeds Rhinos assistant coach and Hull FC star Sean Long has joined Oldham RLFC as Head Coach for 2024 and beyond on a three year deal after his exit from Wakefield Trinity.
Long arrives at Boundary Park, where he will remain until at least the end of the 2026 season, with a desire to drive the club’s resurgence.
“Oldham has been a hotbed of rugby for many, many years, and the prospect of getting them back to where they should be, pushed me (to sign) and I didn’t really have to think about it,” said the newly-appointed Roughyeds boss.
“The vision of the club and the facilities we’ve got is something that attracted me.
“We’ve got a very good squad and next season we want to win the league and, building on that, the vision is to go all the way.”
Long boasts a wealth of coaching experience having served in several assistant roles since his retirement as a player in 2011, before taking charge of Featherstone earlier this year.
Before his return to St Helens in 2014 – where he had a distinguished playing career marked by four Grand Final victories, two World Club Challenge wins and five Challenge Cup trophies – he had served as the assistant boss at Salford.
The 2000 Man of Steel winner, during his time on the Saints coaching staff, worked with Kieron Cunningham and latterly Justin Holbrook where he helped the club win the League Leaders Shield in 2018.
He was also part of the Samoa coaching staff in both the 2013 and 2017 Rugby League World Cups, as well as the France set-up in the 2021 tournament.
The former Great Britain scrum-half left Saints in 2019 for Premiership Rugby Union club Harlequins where he was attack coach.
Long took on his first head-coaching role with Featherstone at the beginning of the year, where he achieved 19 wins out of 22 matches and, when he departed the club in August, left them eight points clear at the top of the Betfred Championship.
He spent time as assistant boss at Wakefield Trinity before agreeing the deal with Roughyeds.
Long gave an insight into the playing style he will bring to Boundary Park, during a long-ranging chat with Roughyeds TV.
“We have very high standards and, even though we are in League One, we won’t be preparing and training like a League One team – we will be pushing them all the way,” he said.
“We will defend aggressively and, in possession, we like to throw the ball around and give licence to the lads to play what they see and express themselves.
“We need to lay the platform with the big forwards that we’ve got, but we want to give our outside-backs as much of the ball as possible to get our fans engaged and play some entertaining rugby.”