Former Batley Bulldogs and Keighley Cougars head coach Craig Lingard will succeed Danny Ward as Castleford Tigers’ head coach after signing a two-year deal; Danny McGuire joins Lingard at the Mend-A-Hose Jungle as assistant coach having recently left Hull Kingston Rovers
Last Updated: 17/10/23 6:00pm
Craig Lingard will take over as Castleford Tigers’ head coach for the 2024 Betfred Super League season, with Danny McGuire as his assistant.
Lingard initially joined the Tigers as assistant to Andy Last, combining that role with his position as head coach of Betfred Championship side Batley Bulldogs, and continued as part of the Tigers’ coaching staff when Danny Ward replaced Last in August.
The 45-year-old had been due to move into a full-time assistant role with Castleford from next season onwards but has now agreed a two-year contract to become head coach after Ward declined the opportunity to extend his stay at the Mend-A-Hose Jungle beyond the 2023 season despite steering them clear of relegation.
“I am massively honoured,” Lingard said. “Something I’ve always aspired to be is a head coach in Super League and I’ve got that opportunity now.
“It has come a little bit sooner than I was expecting but it’s something I’m going to grab with both hands and hopefully be a success.
“I’m coming in with my eyes fully wide open, it’s not a new venue for me and I’ve got a good idea about the workings of the club and with a lot of change in personnel with people leaving and people coming in the bulk of the squad that are staying I’ve got experience of working with those guys.
Something I’ve always aspired to be is a head coach in Super League and I’ve got that opportunity now. It has come a little bit sooner than I was expecting but it’s something I’m going to grab with both hands.
New Castleford head coach Craig Lingard
“I can work a bit more closely with them next year and put my stamp on how I want us to play and the values we want to bring back to Castleford Tigers to make us more successful than we have been this season.”
Lingard moved into coaching following a 10-year playing career with Batley, stepping up to his first head coaching job in the professional ranks with Keighley Cougars where he was in charge from 2017 to 2019.
He returned to the Fox’s Biscuits Stadium in 2020 and guided Batley to the 2022 Championship Grand Final, where they were beaten by Leigh Centurions, and a narrow defeat to Halifax Panthers in this year’s 1895 Cup final at Wembley.
Leeds Rhinos great McGuire, meanwhile, joins Lingard after leaving fellow Super League side Hull Kingston Rovers at the end of the 2023 season where he had been serving as assistant to Willie Peters.
“I’m really excited about the challenge after a fair bit of speculation, but for me it’s about looking forward to working with a really talented bunch of players and a club with history and everything that surrounds Castleford Tigers,” McGuire said.
“I’m still fairly early on into my coaching journey with loads to learn and experience so I’m excited to be working alongside somebody who’s achieved so much in the game so I’ll be picking his brains hopefully we can gel really well and work well as a combination.”
Watch every match of the 2024 Betfred Super League season, including Magic Weekend, the play-offs, and men’s, women’s and wheelchair Grand Finals, live on Sky Sports. Also stream on NOW.