Adam Simpson axed as West Coast coach

Justin Chadwick |

Adam Simpson’s time in charge of West Coast is over after two highly disappointing seasons.
Adam Simpson’s time in charge of West Coast is over after two highly disappointing seasons.

West Coast have axed coach Adam Simpson following a horror run of results over the past few years.

The Eagles released a short statement on Tuesday confirming the parting of ways.

They didn’t confirm whether Simpson would walk away immediately, or whether he would receive a farewell game.

West Coast will hold a press conference at 12.30pm (WST) where chief executive Don Pyke and chair Paul Fitzpatrick will speak.

“The West Coast Eagles and senior coach Adam Simpson have mutually agreed that his 11-year tenure at the club will come to an end,” the club said in a statement.

“Simpson, one of only six senior coaches in the 37-year history of the club and one of only three to lead the club to premiership glory, achieved the ultimate success in 2018 to join Michael Malthouse (1992, 1994) and John Worsfold (2006) in bringing the cup to WA.”

West Coast held a board meeting on Tuesday morning where Simpson’s fate was sealed.

Eagles players made their way out onto Mineral Resources Park for training just minutes after Simpson’s departure was officially announced.

The players looked in light spirits despite the drama surrounding the club.

Simpson, who was contracted until the end of 2025, was almost axed at the end of last year, and he knew the heat was on him again.

“We went through this last year, didn’t we,” he said on the Seven Network on Monday night.

“We’ll work through it. We’ll keep the conversations pretty open.

“We’ll keep moving forward. I’m sure we’ll get a decision made.”

Asked if he would like clarity on his position, Simpson replied: “I haven’t really thought about that.

“I’m just trying to do my job as best as I can, and trying to explain what we’re … trying to get better at.

“I thought the early part of the season we had some really good results.

“There’s a few games in the last month or so that have been pretty disappointing, so I can understand the rhetoric around it.”

Adam Simpson.
Adam Simpson didn’t have enough victories in recent seasons to stay in control at the Eagles. (Matt Turner/AAP PHOTOS)

The early parting of ways is set to cost West Coast around a million dollars.

Attention will now turn to who they will appoint as replacement – both in the short term and long term.

Eagles premiership star Dean Cox, who is an assistant at Sydney, is considered among the early frontrunners.

Simpson has been at the helm of West Coast since the end of 2013, guiding the club to the 2015 grand final and the 2018 flag.

But the Eagles’ fall from grace over the past few years resulted in the spotlight being shone squarely on him.

West Coast have won just eight of their past 57 games, with the heat intensifying even more following lacklustre losses to Hawthorn and Melbourne over the past fortnight.

Reports of a text message leak last week in which three players expressed their desire for Simpson to be moved on added further pressure on the club.

The Eagles take on the Brisbane Lions at Optus Stadium on Sunday.

Star defender Jeremy McGovern is almost certain to miss the match with a fractured rib and a suspected punctured lung.