A defiant Brad Arthur claims it's “crazy” his future as Parramatta coach is under the spotlight with his side sitting fourth on the NRL ladder.
Arthur fronted the media on Friday for the first time since questions were raised over his future, with the Eels on the slide following three straight losses.
The under-fire Parramatta coach also defended his relationship with other staff and insisted he was happy with the club's recruitment set up.
He was also confident that speculation around captain Clint Gutherson's asking price had not been leaked from within and has supported the decision for negotiations for 2022 and beyond to be put off until season's end.
But with the last year of his own deal seemingly in question ahead of Saturday's clash with Manly, Arthur admitted he was bemused by the focus on his future.
“There's 12 teams right now that sit below us, so if you want me to be real honest I think it's crazy that we're sitting here talking about my job,” Arthur said.
“But all I know is that I'm doing the best I can and the players are doing the best they can.
“Yeah our form is down a little bit, but we can easily turn that around.
“But I'm fully aware of the consequences and the reliability and the actions that we have, they fall on my shoulders.”
Saturday's match shapes as crucial for not just Arthur, but the Eels' season.
A fourth straight loss will see them drop out of the top four with the hardest run home of any team to come.
But he is also well accustomed to the spotlight on his position, given the drums were beating at the end of last year for a failure to make an impact in the finals in recent years.
“I've been coaching for eight years now … We hadn't even played a game at the start of the year and there was already some conjecture around my position,” Arthur said.
“As a playing group, they're very good in terms of (what) we don't discuss. I never have, in the time I have been here around what is said in the media.
“A win takes away all the noise.”
Arthur also defended the club's workman-like roster, with the finger pointed at the Eels' lack of a genuine superstar behind their inability to take the next step in the finals.
He also insisted there were no issues between he and general manager Mark O'Neill, after suggestions that was part of the club's recruitment issues.
“The club has done a very good job to give us a squad. I've never once complained in eight years of the squad that we have to work with.
“We're a blue-collar workman-type squad where we need all 17 players each week to do their job.
“My relationship with everyone at the club is good.”Internet Explorer Channel Network