NRL: Warriors reportedly close to re-signing coach Stephen Kearney

The Warriors are close to re-signing head coach Stephen Kearney on a long-term deal, according to reports.

Kearney, who is in the final year of his current contract, has been offered a three-year deal which would keep him at the club until the end of 2022, NZME reports.

Both parties were hopeful of agreeing to terms before the New Year, but the process has dragged out longer than expected.

Warriors CEO Cameron George told NZME he believes Kearney is the right man to lead the Warriors.

"We haven't needed to rush it," George explained. "But Stephen is part of our future - he has got to be.

"This club has suffered due to instability. I'm conscious of making sure that if we have good people in the right roles, we need to keep them.

"I will say it anywhere, anytime that Stephen is the right person to lead this club forward. So we want to secure his services for the future, because it's all part of the moving picture. If we have our coaching structures and pathways right, and Stephen is the head honcho over that, you are going to have better results.

"But if you are chopping and changing up top, a new guy might say it is not the roster I want, and it will take two years to rejig it."

Kearney replaced Andrew McFadden as the head coach in 2017, and despite a challenging first season, he led the Warriors to the finals in 2018 for the first time in seven years.

The Warriors finished sixth, winning 15 of their 24 matches during the home-and-away season, before losing to the Penrith Panthers in the first round of the playoffs.

The Warriors have two pre-season fixtures coming up against the Melbourne Storm (February 22) and Wests Tigers (March 2), before they open their 2019 season against the Canterbury Bulldogs in Auckland on March 16.

Newshub.