Reports linking Willie Poching with Keighley Cougars job

Keighley Cougars have confirmed that they will appoint their new coach last week – with speculation linking Hull KR assistant Willie Poching with a move across Yorkshire.

The Cougars have not yet decided the identity of Paul March’s replacement, but reports suggest that Poching is being interviewed for the role.

Keighley chairman Gary Fawcett told League Express this week: “We are going to change things and reduce the playing budget and try to attract younger players to the club.

“We will also use a new 16-19s Academy side and our reserves side to get players. This will drop the average age of the team and we will become a squad that can be developed over the coming seasons.

“We’ll aim for a top-five finish in the 2017 season and then hopefully push for promotion the following season in 2018.

“Because of this, we are looking for a coach with a track record of developing youngsters through to successful first team players. We have already had ten applicants, including some from as far afield as Australia and New Zealand, and have begun the interviewing process.

“We have a core of players here that we want to sign up for next season and are happy to stay at Cougar Park pending the appointment of a coach. Other players we are looking at will also want to know who the Head Coach is before they sign with the club.”

Fawcett then confirmed on the Cougars website: “The announcement of a new coach will be made early next week with announcements regarding players signing new deals and joining the club to follow in due course.”