SHAUN Wane admits he would have walked away from England had the players not convinced him he is the right man for the job.
And Manchester United can claim a role in keeping him on after he spoke to psychologist Mick Farrell as he reviewed himself following the World Cup exit.
The national chief conducted a ‘very upsetting’ review into himself after last year’s agonising 27-26 extra time semi-final loss to Samoa while the Rugby Football League reviewed him.
Now after bosses handed him a deal until the 2025 tournament in France, Wane revealed the players’ comments made sure he stayed.
He said: “Hearing that further convinced me to stay on.
“If I had feedback that they weren’t happy or that we got things wrong, it would’ve changed things. I won’t stay where I’m not wanted.
“The players were really, really vocal to me personally after that game and the day after about how positive things were, how close we came.
“And from the meetings I had with my players and staff, I was taken aback by how much they enjoyed it.
MOST READ IN RUGBY LEAGUE
“Chris Hill, who’s a man of many, many tournaments in his career, said it was the best he’d ever felt and the best camp he’d ever been on.
“Having that from a senior player like him, who played really well in the tournament, is a testament to my staff and the environment they created.
Most read in Rugby League
“There were many other comments too. I knew we were in a good place.
“I spoke to many people I rate very highly. Mick Farrell was my psychologist when I was at Wigan and he’s now at Manchester United.
“I spoke to him in depth but it was very much self-analysis. I knew the team I picked, I knew how we trained, I knew how I verbalised messages. I looked back at meetings and the information I gave the players.
“It was very much not looking around to blame people, it started with me. It was very detailed and very upsetting.”
Wane’s road to the next World Cup starts with next month’s mid-season Test against France, for which he admits there ‘won’t be a lot of players from one club’ in his squad.
He will speak to skipper Sam Tomkins, who is retiring at the end of the season, and this squad will have one eye on 2025, with the likes of Leeds’ Harry Newman in line to be picked.
The other will be on showing England can be the best Test nation after St Helens conquered the world at club level.
That side included Mark Percival, Jonny Lomax and Alex Walmsley, who missed the World Cup through injury, and Wane – who hopes to face Tonga in a three-match series in the autumn – added: “Having those players available would’ve made us stronger.
“I’m not sure we needed confidence that we can perform at the highest level. I did think they had a chance of winning and I thought Saints’ players were outstanding.
“But it’s a good message if anyone wasn’t sure that we can challenge those teams – and that was the upsetting thing. If we’d have had a chance in the World Cup final, I thought we’d have had a good dig at Australia.”
Wane’s current deal expires at the end of the next World Cup and RFL chairman Simon Johnson admitted: “I think Shaun won’t go beyond France 2025, even if he wins.”
That clearly rankles as the man himself added: “I think Simon’s done something that I’m finishing in 2025. That decision’s been made I think.
“It is what it is.”