Bennett coy on future after Souths GF loss

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Bennett coy on future after Souths GF loss

Wayne Bennett admits he has a plan formulating for his next gig in rugby league after Sunday night's NRL grand final loss marked the end of his three-year stint at South Sydney.

The 71-year-old mastercoach lurches into the unknown for the first time in his career in 2022 but said he's in no rush to finalise his future beyond Redfern.

For now, a 14-12 loss to Penrith in the decider needs to be processed.

“When I know what the plan is I will let you know,” he told media after Sunday's loss at Suncorp Stadium.

“There is something formulating in my mind but I don't know what it is yet.”

The seven-time premiership winner is tipped to coach the next NRL franchise in Brisbane in 2023 but also has an offer to remain involved with South Sydney.

When pushed to give an indication of what he might do, Bennett refused to give giving anything away.

“I have a number of options on the table, and I just don't know what I will do right now,” he said.

“Today is not a good day and tomorrow will not be a good day for the state of mind I will be in to make a decision on my future.

“I'll settle in a couple of weeks.

“I respect Souths enormously and what they have done for me.

“If they think I have done something for them they have done a lot for me as well.

“I won't do anything without talking to Souths first and foremost.”

Only two things are for certain: he'll be moving back to Brisbane and Jason Demetriou will take over as head coach of the Rabbitohs from next year.

After years as Bennett's right-hand man, Demetriou will take over the squad that will lose skipper Adam Reynolds, as well as Dane Gagai and Jaydn Su'a.

But Bennett has backed Demetriou to continue Souths' success in his first NRL coaching gig.

“It will change a bit and there will be some challenges for them. But I think they'll be up for that,” Bennett said.

“The big issue will be Adam and replacing him. Anthony Milford is going there and he will play better football than he has in the past few years.

“That's a good buy by them.

“Jason will do a good job.

“He's been a wonderful servant to the game and me personally.

“He has been a wonderful co-coach and done a great job… Jason is an extremely competent coach so I don't think there will be many ripples at all.”

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