Freddy turns to Penrith hero in last-ditch attempt to save Blues job

Brad Fittler is set to pitch changes to his coaching staff in an effort to save his job at the Blues.

Off-contract with the Blues after this year’s 2-1 loss to the Maroons, Fittler is keen to stay on as head coach and at this stage, it’s likely the NSW board will grant him at least another 12 months.

As reported by The Daily Telegraph, Fittler is set to appoint Penrith coach Ivan Cleary as a coaching consultant for the 2024 series.

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Ivan Cleary will likely join the Blues coaching staff in a game day role in 2024Source: The Daily Telegraph

It is understood Cleary’s position will only be a game day role as to not disrupt his job at the Panthers.

Cleary was in the box with Fittler and Panthers legend Greg Alexander for Game III of the 2023 series. That was the only win for the Blues in the series.

Alexander has been on the books with the Blues as an adviser since 2018.

If Fittler had led NSW to a series win in 2023, he would have automatically generated an extension, however the 2-1 loss meant the Blues have dropped three of the past four series.

Fittler is the most capped Blues player with 31 appearances. He is currently sitting second (18) behind Phil Gould (24) on the list for games coached for New South Wales.

You could write your own ticket after Game II about Fittler coaching the Blues in 2024, but it appears that due to the lack of quality candidates waiting in the wings, ‘Freddy’ will be at the helm next season.

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