Tim Mannah: "I understand Ricky's decision to leave"

Pirtek Parramatta Eels club captain Tim Mannah says he completely understands Head Coach Ricky Stuart's decision to move on from the club.


Speaking outside the Eels Presentation Evening, Tim says he knows Ricky has personal reasons for leaving that everyone needs to accept.


"Everyone knows what kind of coach he is, and what he's capable of doing; so as a player I definitely would want him around, but as a friend, knowing the circumstances he's in, I totally understand the reasons for it," Tim said.


"He can go [to Canberra] with my support."


Mannah says despite the decision, he's not angry or upset in Ricky's motivation.


"I don't feel let down; it would have been nice for him to stick around because we've gone through a few coaches and he's definitely one I thought would be capable of building a strong culture for us, but it's private issues for him and what he feels is best for him and his family," he said.


"So for us it's about moving on and accepting it the best we can."


Tim admits the heat is on the board and the club for deciding who will be the next coach, but is confident they will make the right choice.


"There'll be some pressure on the board to make sure they get the decision right - but I've got a lot of faith in Steve Sharp and the board, he's very passionate about getting people on board, and getting everyone on the same page and heading in the right direction."


"I totally understand the fans' frustrations and if I was them I'd be feeling the exact same way. And even though it's his personal reasons, it's hard to accept as a player."


"But at the same time he's still a human being so there's no point being critical of someone who's trying to help out his family."


Despite the upheaval, Tim is confident the club remains in a good position to build for the 2014 season.


"We've got a lot of good players coming to the club next year, and a lot of juniors who made their debuts this year," he said.


"And they're going to get a lot of experience, and whoever comes in to coach next year will take full advantage of that."