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Page last updated at 10:01 GMT, Monday, 25 October 2010 11:01 UK

Brian McClennan resigns as Leeds Rhinos boss

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McDermott 'humbled' by Rhinos role

Brian McClennan has resigned as head coach of Leeds Rhinos, with assistant Brian McDermott replacing him.

McClennan, 48, took over at Headingley in 2007 and led them to the Super League title in 2008 and 2009 but they lost in the 2010 semi-finals to Wigan.

McDermott agreed to leave his role as Harlequins head coach earlier this season to join the Rhinos, with a view to replacing McClennan in 2012.

The 40-year-old from Wakefield has signed a three-year deal as head coach.

McClennan, who only signed a new one-year deal in May, said: "Since the conclusion of last season, I have had time to reflect. I have also spent time with Brian McDermott assessing the future. Therefore, I think the time is right to hand over the reins now rather than later.

"I just feel if I continued it would be for selfish reasons only. Brian is ready now and will do a great job.

McClennan thankful for 'three brilliant years'

"I would also like to acknowledge and thank all the wonderful players and staff who have been terrific these past three years. The fans have been great too."

McDermott, who was assistant coach at Leeds in 2004 and 2005, said: "I feel very humbled and honoured to take over from Brian McClennan and I'm also very determined to help improve again a top-class bunch of players and men.

"Super League is a tough competition to win and we'll all have to step up another level if we are challenge for honours next year."

GEORGE RILEY'S BLOG

Chief executive Gary Hetherington added: "Brian McDermott was the choice of Brian and myself and he was appointed to come in for 2011 as Brian's number two before taking over in 2012.

"Brian McClennan now feels the time is right for him to stand down and accelerate the handover to Brian McDermott. Brian McClennan and I have spent a lot of time recently discussing this and I have to say, losing Brian is not something I wanted to hear, but I understand his decision.

"We're fortunate to have someone of Brian McDermott's ability and experience to take over. Brian is one of the most talented young English coaches in the game and we believe he is the right man to oversee the next stage in the Rhinos development."



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see also
McDermott quits Quins for Leeds
17 Aug 10 |  Harlequins
McClennan gets Leeds Rhinos post
11 Jul 07 |  Rugby League


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