THERE'S a lot to consider for the candidates deciding to chase the Gold Coast coaching job vacated by Rodney Eade. 

As one of only 18 such roles in the country, it's coveted, but is a big task for whoever gets the nod.

There's a list of issues they need to be aware of, but equally, a silver lining that's hard to ignore.

Let's have a quick look at them.

Clubs prepared to lose top assistants to Suns


1. One of the best spines in the competition
While they've had some injury and form issues this season, the Suns still have the building blocks of an exciting team. Co-captains Tom Lynch and Steven May are as good a full-forward/full-back combination as there is in the League. At 203cm, 20-year-old Peter Wright is an athletic modern-day forward with 39 games under his belt. Sam Day is on the comeback from a horror hip injury that cruelled his 2017, but is an excellent forward-ruck option to support Jarrod Witts and can also be used in defence. Rory Thompson has talent as a negating defender but hasn't consistently been on the field, while young Jack Leslie has blossomed in the back 50 under Eade.

2. Great new facility
The opening of the Suns' $22 million training and administration facility prior to the season means the new coach will want for nothing on a training front. Gold Coast has a state-of-the-art everything – all on the one site – that is as good as any in the league.

3. Opportunity
The bar has been set pretty low for success at the Suns. After seven seasons of futility, the club is crying out for a finals appearance – let alone to challenge for a premiership – so a trip to the top eight in the first couple of seasons would almost guarantee a long-term tenure at the club. The first coach to take the Suns to the finals would etch his name in history.

4. Bringing your own team
With CEO Mark Evans still to complete his review into the football department, there's a fair chance Eade won't be the only casualty. In the form of Evans, the new coach has an experienced football man as his CEO, and he'd likely be able to bring a few offsiders with him, with all four Suns assistants out of contract. 

Tom Lynch and Steven May form part of the Suns' impressive on-field spine. Picture: AFL Photos


1. Tom Lynch the free agent
Lynch is Gold Coast's co-captain and their best player – and next year he becomes a restricted free agent. Along with Steven May he has carried the hopes of the club in so many ways, but boy, have they been let down. Not only does the new coach have to show Lynch the Suns have a bright future, he needs to show the rest of the players that the club stands for something.

2. The market
Time and time again, the Gold Coast has proven a black hole for professional sporting teams. Rugby league, soccer, basketball – they've all come and gone (and come again in rugby league's case). No matter what excuses you make or reasons for optimism you come up with, the Suns are floundering. They're without a major guernsey sponsor and for the first 10 games next season they'll be without a home ground – not an ideal starting point.

3. Gary Ablett
In all likelihood, the new coach will be without Ablett in 2018. He'll have to address a club that has relied heavily on the dual Brownlow medallist both on the field (for his incredible play) and off it (for visibility in a rugby league-dominated market) since its inception. If Ablett is forced to stay at the Suns, he'll be dealing with a player that has twice asked to be traded – and twice been refused. Ablett is the ultimate professional, but that is a potentially sticky situation.

4. Demand for instant success
Chairman Tony Cochrane said a lack of wins ultimately cost Eade his job. He said there was an expectation of making finals this year and Eade failed. That's true. The new man will have essentially the same list in 2018, and while it's unfair to expect lofty results in anyone's first season, there'll be an eagle eye watching over everything the new coach does.

Mark Evans and Tony Cochrane will have high expectations. Picture: AFL Photos