Sam Burgess bizarrely likened to Premier League manager

Warrington Wolves stunned the rugby league world when they chose to replace former Leeds Rhinos and Castleford Tigers coach Daryl Powell with star Sam Burgess.

Going from a man who has been coaching for over 20 years in Super League to a man taking on his first head coach role is a big and bold move.

Burgess is perhaps the best British player the sport has produced in the 21st Century as seen by his famous 2014 Grand Final display for South Sydney Rabbitohs.

The forward won the Man of the Match with a broken cheekbone that day. He is a legend of the club and is currently assistant at the club.

As he prepares to take charge of Warrington, speaking on Sky Sports former Warrington man Brian Carney said Burgess can be the Pep Guardiola of Super League after Pep built a dynasty at Barcelona in his first job, he is now the Premier League’s top manager at Manchester City.

“I’ll throw a little one at you as well, I believe Pep Guardiola took charge off Barcelona two years after hanging the boots up, so I mean if Pep can do it at Barcelona then maybe Sam can do it at Warrington, who knows?”

Burgess will join the Wire for the 2024 Super League season having agreed a two-year contract.

Following his retirement from a decorated playing career in 2019, Burgess has transitioned into the coaching set-up at South Sydney Rabbitohs, currently working as an Assistant Coach for the NRL side.

Burgess is one of the most renowned and respected leaders in the global game. The former England captain famously led the Rabbitohs to the 2014 NRL title, being awarded the Clive Churchill Medal despite suffering a broken cheekbone in the opening minute.

He represented England and Great Britain on 26 occasions during his playing career and captained the national team to the World Cup Final in 2017 under the stewardship of Wayne Bennett.

Sam Burgess
As part of the review of the Rugby department, Gary Chambers will be promoted to Director of Rugby. He will have an overarching responsibility for the Rugby department from first team downwards.

Chambers will remain in interim charge for the remainder of the 2023 season before taking up the new role.

Richard Marshall will remain as Assistant Coach with a further update about a second Assistant to be announced in due course.

Sam Burgess said: “I’m pleased to confirm I will take on the role of Head Coach at the Warrington Wolves for seasons 24/25.

“From playing in the Super League to having the opportunity to lead an incredible club, it’s a full circle moment and one I am fully committed to and excited by.

“I want to thank Simon [Moran], Stuart [Middleton] and Karl [Fitzpatrick] at the Wolves for their courage and collaboration, as I look forward to returning to England to coach this great club.

“To Russell [Crowe], Blake [Solly], JD [Demetriou] and the stakeholders at South Sydney, thank you for supporting me in taking on this new position. We still have an opportunity to play some great football for the remainder of the year and to do so alongside our current staff and squad, is my focus.”