Bennett’s game costs Broncos staffers
Wayne Bennett's stubborn refusal to leave the Broncos has cost his most loyal lieutenants hundreds of thousands of dollars.
The Sunday Mail can reveal three of Bennett's key support staff missed out on six-figure payouts after the former Broncos coach reneged on a plan to swap clubs with South Sydney's Anthony Seibold.
The Broncos took the drastic measure of sacking their seven-time premiership winning coach on December 2 following a failed bid to orchestrate a coach swap with Seibold.
Bennett's 25-year association with the Broncos ended dramatically earlier this month when the six-month saga surrounding his future was brought to a head.
In the days leading up to Bennett's sacking, the Broncos and Rabbitohs worked tirelessly to orchestrate a palatable deal for Bennett, who had signed with South Sydney from 2020, to switch clubs immediately.
The Broncos believed they had satisfied Bennett's demands on November 30 when he was expected to agree to the swap.
The Sunday Mail has learned part of the negotiations was for Bennett's key football staff to receive lucrative payouts for the remainder of their contracts, given Seibold would bring his own staff to the club.
Assistant coach Jason Demetriou and analyst Scott Barker were contracted until the end of the 2019 season, while performance boss Jeremy Hickmans had another two years at the club.
The Broncos proposed the trio would be paid above what was contractually required if Bennett left the Broncos on his own terms.
However Bennett, who last month declared he was not interested in a payout from the Broncos, did not agree to the deal, prompting Brisbane to sack him two days later.
Bennett's move saw the Broncos sever ties with Demetriou, Barker and Hickmans, who received minimal payouts, believed to be about one month's salary, rather than what was originally proposed.
Demetriou has landed on his feet by joining Bennett at South Sydney as his chief assistant, however Barker and Hickmans' futures remain unclear.
Seibold has appointed at least four new staff to his football department after joining the Broncos on a five-year deal.
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