The Sydney Roosters claim they couldn't afford another wasted year waiting around for Melbourne coach Craig Bellamy as they handed the reins to rookie mentor Trent Robinson.
The Roosters broke from their traditional penchant for high profile coaches by appointing the relatively unknown Robinson for the next three years - just two days after sacking Brian Smith.
Robinson, 35, worked under Smith at both Newcastle, and the Roosters during their run to the 2010 grand final before heading to Super League with Catalans Dragons - where he was named coach of the year in 2011.
With Sonny Bill Williams expected to join James Maloney at the club in 2013, Robinson faces a baptism of fire when anything but a return to the finals will be deemed a failure.
The glamour club was said to be circling Bellamy for the role, but with the two-time grand final winning coach tied to the Storm until the end of next season, Roosters chief executive Steve Noyce said the club could not tread water for another 12 months.
"The challenge you have there is what do you do in the middle of that," Noyce told AAP.
"...if you don't make the semis with eight teams out of 16, that's far from a satisfactory result.
"Unfortunately for whatever reason that had happened the last two years - if people thought you could now have another year where you could go into automatic pilot while you're waiting for somebody else, I don't think that was a good option."
And so the Roosters now have Robinson at the helm, who was surprisingly given the job ahead of Roosters Toyota Cup coach Jason Taylor.
Not since the 1960s when the likes of Louis Neumann and Bert Holcroft were given the job have the Roosters gone with a coach with such little profile as Robinson - who played four top grade games with Wests Tigers and Parramatta before embarking on a coaching career.
He has won praise though for his efforts in Super League, where he lifted the Dragons from last in 2010 to sixth in 2011.
Noyce was confident the Roosters had the right man.
"It's about identifying the best person that you can," Noyce said.
"He's had a really lengthy education in footy.
"In some respects that's not NRL experience, but it's pretty strong pedigree of football and coaching experience there and we're excited about that."
Noyce admits Robinson left a fair impression on the club when he worked as a defensive coach under Smith - and he is hoping Robinson can pick up where his former mentor left off.
"There are a lot of good, young talented players here - a lot of those things Robbo was a contributor in setting that up when we started the journey in 2010," Noyce said.
"Culturally and strategically he'll fit right into that.
"Everyone who's still here that worked with Trent in 2010 knew that one day he would be an NRL coach.
"They didn't know necessarily that day would come as quick as it had, but certainly he has all the credentials."