Warrington “scouring the world” for a half-back, admits CEO Karl Fitzpatrick

Warrington chief executive Karl Fitzpatrick has admitted to League Express that a new halfback is at the top of the club’s priority list for 2018.

The Wolves, who began their Qualifiers with a victory at Widnes on Friday night, are expected to make changes to their squad for next year after Fitzpatrick admitted some performances this season have been “unacceptable”.

And with Kurt Gidley leaving, he admitted that his club is scouring the world for a new halfback. “Yeah, that’s the priority,” Fitzpatrick told League Express.

“We’ve got Dec (Patton) who has come through and played in our system, but we need another half to play alongside Kevin Brown and Dec.

“We are searching the world for that halfback and we’re continuing to do so, I can promise the Warrington fans that. We’re leaving no stone unturned.”

Fitzpatrick also hinted at further new recruits arriving, saying: “There’s a couple of players we haven’t decided on and, while there won’t be wholesale changes, there will be changes. Some performances this year have been unacceptable.”

He continued: “The market is difficult. We’re looking overseas as I’ve said, but the salary cap in the NRL is far greater than ours. Therefore, the player value in the NRL is higher and your average NRL players want bigger salaries over here.

“Add to that your good British players don’t come out of contract very often – and we’re the same, with Chris Hill, Ben Currie and Daryl Clark all tied down – and it makes recruitment difficult.”

Fitzpatrick also admitted there is no shortage of motivation from the Wolves ahead of the Qualifiers, despite an incredible fall from grace in the last twelve months.

“The motivation is simple,” he said. “No team in Warrington’s history has ever been relegated and having that over our heads is not nice.

“We’re aware it’s going to be difficult because we’ll be the prized scalp for the Championship teams, but we want to get it put to bed early. How you start is critical in these Qualifiers.”

Meanwhile, League Express understands that while Warrington assistant coach Richard Agar is attracting interest from NRL side St George, although he is not certain to take up any offer. Agar remains under contract at the Halliwell Jones Stadium for 2018 and is reportedly happy at the club.