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Trent Barrett, future, sacking, news, Bulldogs powerbrokers, board meeting, emergency meeting, Canterbury-Bankstown bosses, fired

Bulldogs powerbrokers are set to hold emergency talks on Monday to discuss the team’s early-season performance and the future of coach Trent Barrett.

Canterbury officials are reportedly frustrated and spent the weekend speculating whether Barrett was still the club’s long-term boss, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.

Pressure was mounting on Barrett prior to his side’s upset victory over the Roosters, but a poor performance against a struggling Knights outfit has shone the spotlight back on the club’s 2022 woes.

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Bulldogs officials will also question director of football Phil Gould, asking whether a return to finals football is possible with Trent Barrett as coach.

Barrett could have led his team for the last time after a 16-6 loss to Adam O’Brien’s Newcastle side.

“Trent Barrett is under enormous pressure, there will be an emergency meeting of the Bulldogs board tomorrow with the suggestion Barrett may have coached his last game,” Warren Smith said on Fox League’s Magic Round coverage.

“We saw Phil Gould here in the media centre not long before kick-off between the Roosters and the Eels and his mood it’s fair to say was fairly dark.

“Maybe a clue there, but big drama at Belmore.”

Club members have sent a wave of complaints to Canterbury-Bankstown directors according to the SMH, with many suggesting it is time to let Barrett go.

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Fox League’s panel of experts spoke on the meeting and suggested the “writing is on the wall”.

“It has been an extremely tough time for Trent Barrett and the Bulldogs but the fact that there is an emergency meeting probably suggests that the writing is on the wall,” Corey Parker said.

“Otherwise then why is there an emergency meeting, what are they going to meet about, if it is not going to be about the future of Trent Barrett.

“It has been a difficult season for them but I don’t know that another coach gets more out of what they have got, I am not sure about that, they have turned up the Bulldogs for most games but they have just really struggled to score points.

“They compete and they turn up but, there is a lot of frustration that is going on there, the performance that they put in the other night against the Knights was totally unacceptable in a lot of areas, and a lot of areas that were just effort based not talent.”

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The former Panthers assistant had no answers in Friday night’s post-match press conference, having slumped to the dismal record of only five wins from 34 games.

Only a few weeks ago, Phil Gould backed Barrett as the long-term Bulldogs coach but now the decision may be out of his hands if the board decides they must severe ties.

“The fact that Phil Gould came out and said that, what does that mean, there is a lot of instability around that,” Corey Parker said.

Many fans had a positive outlook coming into this season, with a number of high-profile recruits including Matt Burton and Josh Addo-Carr ready to revive the cellar dwellers.

But now any optimism has faded and the Bulldogs will not be short of options should they be needing a new coach.

Paul Green, Shane Flanagan and Cameron Ciraldo are the experienced options to take over, while Steve Price has had a successful stint in Cronulla and Kristian Woolf has been solid at St Helens.

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Krzysztof Stanowicz

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