Feeling the job’s only half done, newly re-signed coach Brad Scott says he never contemplated leaving North Melbourne.
Scott will become the longest serving coach of the Kangaroos, surpassing Denis Pagan, if he sees out his new two-year deal that takes him through until the end of the 2020 AFL season.
Already signed for next year, Scott said the extension was backing from the club of the current rebuild, which saw them finish 15th this season with just six wins.
“I’ve been extremely impressed with the way the club has stuck to the strategy this year through periods of adversity,” Scott told reporters on Wednesday.
“When the wins aren’t mounting and the losses start to stack up, people can falter at times – even if you do have a solid strategy but the football club has been rock solid.”
Scott’s new deal ends speculation he had topped the wishlist of rivals Gold Coast.
The 41-year-old, who became coach in 2010, said he had always remained committed to North despite media speculation linking him elsewhere.
“I would expect people would approach my management … but I was certainly not keen to explore any other options,” Scott said.
“The media speculation was out of control … I have been very clear in telling everyone exactly the process we would go through.
“It was purely to work out I was still the best fit for North Melbourne and as soon as they came to that conclusion it very quickly got to this result.”
Scott refused to buy into talk about North being frontrunners to steal Richmond star Dustin Martin with a seven-figure offer or lure Josh Kelly from the Giants.
He did say that the future of a number of their players, including veteran Jarrad Waite, were on hold.
“There are some really tough decisions you have got to make on individuals and we have a really strong philosophy that we’re club-first,” he said.
“We can’t give Jarrad and the others exact scenarios because we’re very fluid in our list build at the moment.”
Scott said he couldn’t put a timeline on when the Kangaroos would again play finals because he felt it was dependent on the other 17 AFL clubs.
But he was confident North had the right plans in place.
“We’ve got a really clear strategy and we’ve got to stick to that and I’m confident if we follow that through success will come,” he said.