Warriors coach Nathan Brown has taken “full responsibility” for Matt Lodge’s early release which rocked the club earlier in the week.
Warriors coach Nathan Brown has taken “full responsibility” for Matt Lodge’s early release — despite the club’s owner revealing his fallout with the star prop was behind the exit.
Lodge was released from the final year of his contract last week amid claims he did not want to relocate to New Zealand with the team.
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But in a stunning interview, Warriors owner Mark Robinson admitted he and Lodge had a falling out in late 2021 and that it “never came right” after that.
Despite the incident seemingly being a catalyst, Brown believes he should cop the blame for Lodge’s time with the club not working out.
“When you recruit a player and it doesn’t work out as in Lodgey’s case it’s no one’s fault but the head coach’s,” he said following the Warriors’ 24-16 loss on Saturday.
“I brought Lodgey here to the club and it didn’t work out so that’s on me. It’s not on the owner, it’s not on Lodgey, it’s not on anyone. It’s on me.
“If you’ve got a bloke moving out of the club that you brought to the club, you’ve done something wrong — it’s no one else’s fault but the head coach.
“If you move players that you didn’t bring to the club, that ain’t your fault because you’re doing your job to help the club get better.
“So I take full responsibility for the Lodgey situation.
“I brought Matt to the club and it didn’t work out so the full responsibility should land on me — not anyone else.”
Lodge gained a release without another NRL club lined up. He is yet to be linked to any club, however he was spotted playing second grade rugby union in Brisbane.
Brown wants to see Lodge succeed wherever he lands next.
“I just had a chat to Lodgey. I just really want him to make his next club to work for him, his best years are coming — that’s all I said to him,” Brown said.
“He was playing some really good, consistent footy for us. I just want him to go to a club where it works out for him for a four or five-year block because his best footy is coming.
“He’s still only 26 and you want to see it work out for him. Unfortunately it didn’t work out here and as I said when you bring a bloke to the club and it doesn’t work out you’ve got to look at maybe what you got wrong.”
Prior to the Robinson-Lodge altercation being revealed, the Warriors released a statement saying Lodge was released due to him not being able to commit to living in New Zealand when the team returns home next season.
Euan Aitken will also not be at the club next season due to the looming move across the ditch.
Brown understands the hesitance from players and gave insight into his own challenges.
“It’s a unique situation,” he said.
“For my personal situation, when I signed with the Warriors I was moving over there with a family of four children.
“In that time I’ve had one that’s finished school, one start year 12 so things changed when Covid-19 happened.
Originally published as ‘That’s on me’: Brown takes ‘full responsibility’ for Lodge’s abrupt Warriors exit