New Knights coach Adam O'Brien has made his first major appointment since being installed as Nathan Brown's successor with the highly experienced David Furner signing a three year deal with Newcastle to become his right-hand man.
Furner will fill one of O'Brien's assistant coach roles following the departure of Brown's coaching offsiders Kristian Woolf [to English Super League club St Helens] and James Shepherd [released].
Further appointments are expected over the next month prior to the start of pre-season training in November.
The recruitment of Furner comes as no surprise after he was identified as a potential new assistant coach by Brown before he resigned late last month.
Following Brown's departure, Furner was interviewed for the coaching role and will now team up with current Sydney Roosters assistant O'Brien after rejecting approaches from a number of NRL rivals.
He has already started working at the club and arrives with an outstanding resume.
The son of Raiders legend Don Furner, his playing career includes 200 NRL games for Canberra and Tests for both the ARL and Super League.
He won the Clive Churchill Medal in the Raiders' 1994 grandfinal triumph over Canterbury and also played for Wigan and Leeds in England at the back-end of his career.
READ MORE: Newcastle Knights
His coaching career kicked off in Canberra where he was Neil Henry's assistant from 2006 to 2008 before taking the head coaching job for almost five seasons and well over 100 NRL games after Henry departed for the Cowboys.
Since finishing up at the Raiders at the back end of the 2013 season, he has been assistant coach to Paul Green at the Cowboys and was there when the club won the 2013 decider before linking with South Sydney and then Leeds in the Super League.
He was also assistant coach of the Kangaroos while Tim Sheens was at the helm.
Knights CEO Phil Gardner confirmed Furner's appointment when contacted by the Newcastle Herald yesterday, revealing he would have almost certainly landed the head coach role had O'Brien not been available.
He also confirmed further appointments to O'Brien's coaching ranks will be made over the coming weeks but there has been no rush with the incoming coach concentrating on the Roosters' finals campaign.
"David's resume is outstanding and he is a great person and will be a great addition to our club, I have no doubt about that," Gardner said.
"We spoke to Richo [Souths boss Shane Richardson] about him and he was absolutely glowing in his praise.
"So we are extremely happy he has agreed to come on board as Adam's assistant because we weren't the only club after him and I know Adam is stoked because he really wanted him here as well."
While you're with us, did you know Newcastle Herald offers breaking news alerts, daily email newsletters and more? Keep up to date with all the local news - sign up here.
IN NEWS TODAY: