Just two days after sacking NRL coach Rick Stone, Newcastle chief executive Matt Gidley admits he could be the next to go.
The club legend was appointed to the top job at the Knights in 2011 and has overseen the failed Wayne Bennett era as well as two stints with Stone at the helm.
As the fallout continues following Stone’s second axing, the blowtorch has now turned on the club boss.
Asked on Wednesday whether he felt he could be the next victim, Gidley told 2KY’s Big Sports Breakfast: “I think so.
“What’s important and has always been important to our club, has been accountability. Players are accountable every weekend, so that shouldn’t change for administration either.”
In four seasons under Gidley’s leadership, Newcastle have visited the finals twice.
But the former NSW and Australian representative said the club had underperformed for the past 10 years, forcing the current administration to draft a new strategic plan for the future.
“We’ve had a decade of poor performance on the field,” he said.
“We need to change that. We need to put footsteps in place to ensure that we are building.
“We’ve just finalised a strategic plan that we hope can get us there and move us in that direction.
“That’s why the decisions like the one we made earlier in the week are never easy.”
Gidley revealed he had already received a number of applications for the head coaching job currently held by assistant coach Danny Buderus in a caretaking capacity.
Queensland cup tandem Shane and Ben Walker have publicly put their hand up for the role, while Melbourne assistant Nathan Brown and Penrith assistant Garth Brennan have also been mentioned as possible suitors.
Gidley said it wasn’t a prerequisite for the coach to be a Newcastle man.
“Hopefully the vast majority of our NRL team can come from our local and developed players,” he said.
“As long as coaches understand that and want to tap into that real competitive advantage we have at our club, there’s no reason why they have to come from Newcastle.”