Richmond interim coach Andrew McQualter remains the “frontrunner” to secure the job permanently, a Fox Footy expert believes.
Speaking on Thursday night, Leigh Montagna said he thinks McQualter is a “70 per cent” chance to become Damien Hardwick’s replacement for 2024 and beyond.
McQualter has been at the Richmond Football Club since 2014, working as an assistant under Hardwick.
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“I’m hearing some positive (reactions to McQualter’s time in charge),” Montagna said.
“I think they want to continue the Richmond way, so they like the Richmond brand that Damien Hardwick has built. Andrew McQualter has got some insight to that.
“Fresh voice, he’s highly respected.
“I reckon he’s 70 per cent (odds to get the full time job). He’s the frontrunner right now. The absolute frontrunner.
“It’s going to take someone very good to beat him.”
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Tigers players pulled McQualter into the team huddle to sing the song after his first win as senior coach, following the victory over GWS last weekend.
Now the team hits the road again, this time bound for Perth to take on the Dockers on Saturday.
McQualter on Thursday conceded a return for star forward Tom Lynch was still “some time away”, but that hadn’t deterred him from making a spot in the finals the Tigers’ bold aim.
Saturday night’s clash against Fremantle looms as a crucial one for the Tigers, who defeated GWS last weekend to give McQualter his first win in charge and to keep finals in the picture.
Despite Richmond only winning four games through 12 rounds, McQualter said making finals remained their goal, and it was doable.
“We live in the space where we want to win every game of football we compete in,” McQualter said.
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“We’re not sitting here talking about finals every day but we understand that’s where we want to be and where we want to get to.
“We’ve got a really driven bunch of players and our leaders have been awesome.
“We understand we can be really competitive when we’re playing our best footy, so we’re looking to do that week by week.”