Leeds confirm Agar set to stay at Rhinos in 2022

Following inaccurate reports in the Australian media, Leeds Rhinos Chief Executive Gary Hetherington has issued the following statement regarding the coaching set up at the club for next season. 

Richard Agar will be with Leeds Rhinos in 2022 and for many years to come. From next season, the likelihood is that he will continue as Head Coach with expanded responsibilities. He has had discussions with Anthony Seibold and others who have expressed an interest in a coaching role with Leeds Rhinos but, contrary to reports in Australia, no offer has been made to anyone and we continue to explore our options.

Richard Agar was appointed Leeds Rhinos permanent Head Coach on a rolling twelve month contract in September 2019.

He took charge of the side during the 2019 campaign on an interim basis and guided the team away from danger of relegation before continuing the resurgence of the club in 2020 as the Rhinos captured the Challenge Cup at Wembley. 

He is the third most experienced coach in Super League in 2020 having started his coaching career at York back in 2004. He has since taken charge of nearly 250 games for York, Hull FC, Wakefield, Leeds and France.

Agar has spent his lifetime in the game of Rugby League, his father Allan having coached Featherstone, Bramley and Rochdale, winning the Challenge Cup with Rovers at Wembley in 1983. Richard began his professional playing career at Featherstone Rovers in 1991, signing as a 19 year-old stand off from Featherstone amateurs Travellers Saints.

He moved on to Dewsbury, and had a brief spell at Rochdale Hornets, before returning to the Rams for his most successful spell as a player. Under Neil Kelly, a Northern Ford Premiership Grand Final appearance was made against Hunslet at Headingley in 1999. The following year he kicked the winning drop goal as Dewsbury beat Leigh in the Final.

He followed Kelly to Widnes Vikings the following season and helped his new side to win the 2001 Grand Final as the Vikings booked a place in Super League. Agar stayed in the Championship though and spent one season with each of Rochdale and Featherstone Rovers before hanging up his boots at the end of 2003. He began his coaching career 15 years ago with a season at York before a seven year spell at Hull FC, working as an assistant to John Kear and Peter Sharp.

In 2008, he was appointed Head Coach for the first time, having had a brief spell as interim Head Coach in 2006. The highlight of his time at the KCOM Stadium was leading Hull FC back to Wembley in 2008. After the 2011 season Agar returned to West Yorkshire to join Wakefield Trinity. He spent three seasons at Belle Vue, leading the team to the play offs in his first season before the club was hit by financial issues off the pitch that meant a major rebuilding of the squad. 

In 2015, he joined Tony Smith’s backroom team at Warrington Wolves, spending three seasons at the Halliwell Jones Stadium before a year in Australia working with NRL side St George Illawarra Dragons.

He returned to England to join the Rhinos in December 2018 in a newly created position to head up the player development department at the club with a focus on the club’s academy production line. However, following the departure of Head Coach Dave Furner in May 2019, he took charge of the team after they had secured just four wins in 14 games.

Agar recently took charge of his 50th game as Head Coach of the Rhinos.