Paul Green tightlipped on Cowboys future
Posted on 04/25/20 7:43 PM
Cowboys coach Paul Green has turned down questions about his coaching future at North Queensland.Paul Green has shut down questions about his coaching future at North Queensland as he focuses on leading the Cowboys out of a worrying NRL form slump.
Green is reportedly facing deadline pressure from head office to accept a $2.8 million contract extension, with the Cowboys fearing they may be left without a coach if the 2015 premiership-winning mentor opts to move on.
Green has not only been linked with a move to Brisbane to take over from Wayne Bennett, but could also command big money elsewhere after emerging as the next NRL super coach with his historic success with the Cowboys.
But he refused to be drawn on his future when quizzed on Friday.
“I’m not sure what you mean about those other ‘challenges’. There are always plenty of coaching challenges being a coach,” Green said ahead of the Cowboys’ clash with the unbeaten Warriors in Auckland on Saturday.
“But with respect to my deal, I’m not going to comment about that.
“I’ve got an agent that’s handling that so, at this stage, I’m just going to focus on the game.”
The 45-year-old has enough on his plate after North Queensland’s one-from-four start this year.
He is demanding the 2017 grand finalists lift against a red-hot Warriors outfit riding an unprecedented four-win start to a season.
“Defensively we need to be a lot better,” Green said.
“There was definitely an improvement in our defence last week but it’s still probably not where it needs to be.
“So, yeah, that is probably the main area we are looking to improve on.”
The Cowboys know the Warriors are “full of talent” with threats across the park, with the likes of Roger Tuivasa-Sheck, Blake Green, Shaun Johnson and Issac Luke all in rare touch.
“(They are) certainly playing with confidence, which is a good thing for them,” Green said.
“They’ve got skill and size and speed so we are expecting a pretty tough game.”
Despite the Cowboys’ poor opening to the year, as superstar halves Johnathan Thurston and Michael Morgan struggle to reconnect, Green isn’t hitting the panic button.
“There are some very good players in our team,” he said.
“So they don’t forget how to play, but the trouble is you get a couple of losses sometimes and as a team your confidence suffers a little bit.
“So it is important that we don’t start doubting that our game is good enough and make sure we keep doing what we do, but do it a bit better than we have been doing it.”
STATS THAT MATTER
– Four straight wins is already the Warriors’ best start to a season.
– A fifth consecutive win over the Warriors would be a record-long streak against any opposition for the Cowboys.
– The Warriors have won all previous 12 matches when leading the Cowboys at halftime at Mt Smart Stadium.