Earlier in the day, Gould showed how Barrett “poured out his heart” during a “raw” phone call Sunday night before stepping down as Canterbury’s coach.
The Bulldogs football manager hopes to have a temporary coach – and an in-house coach – by Wednesday, and said the club feels they have let Barrett down because of his decision to leave.
Last weekend, speculation about Barrett’s future unfolded after a loss on Friday night from Newcastle.
In Gould, most of Dog’s supporters believed that Barrett was safe after he announced further 100% dumb two weeks ago: “Trent Barrett will coach the Bulldogs long after I’m gone – long after I’m gone – and he’ll be the club’s long-term coach.”
On the question of Herald on Monday, which changed in that short time, Gould, who stopped at the Belmore Gate to address the giant media, said: “It was Trent’s decision. I certainly wasn’t going to fire him. It is a pity that this has happened.
“I think because of the speeches and the pressure he had a feeling that he had no decisions, which went wrong.
“That’s how he felt at the time. The decision he made on Sunday night. There were roller coasters on Saturday and Sunday. Late last night, after I finished commenting on Nine, we had a long discussion, it was a very difficult discussion, it was pretty raw, he laid out a little soul and put his soul into this work.
“It’s sad how it ended. Hopefully now he will find a little respite and a little peace.
“He wanted to stop speculation and any pressure on the council to make a decision, so he took it upon himself [to resign]».
Manley got rid of Barrett, and it now lasted just 18 months after a three-year contract with Canterbury, but Gould said fans had not seen the last of Barrett as head coach.
Barrett attended Monday’s funeral and was not in Belmore, while several flu-affected players learned the news via text message.
“He’s as good a young coach as I’ve seen going through the system, he just ended up in the wrong place and at the wrong time,” Gould said.
“He takes on a lot of work because he supports himself and is very confident in his abilities. He works a lot – he is the most hard-working young coach I have ever seen.
“He put his heart and soul into it, laid out everything he could, but said, ‘I don’t see a clear path and I don’t want the club to suffer,’ so he made the decision himself.”
Cameron Siraldo was discussed as a possible replacement, but sources aware of his situation said Herald The 37-year-old had no chance of leaving Penrith in the middle of this season.
Like Craig Fitzgibbon, who withdrew from the Roosters in the middle of the season after taking the top job as Cronula last year, Giraldo wants to finish what he started as prime minister and win titles for each other.
He also remains a good friend of Barrett, and any chance to change him so quickly has no appeal to the Panther assistant.
Gould was not interested in coaching and said that “there is no chance in the world” for him to take the top post.
Canterbury have won just five of 34 games with Barrett. He scored well with worthy players such as Matt Burton, Tevita Pangai Jr. and Josh Ada-Carr, but there were few improvements on the field.
Paul Vaughan, whom the Dogs don’t want at the end of the season – and has no interest from rival NRL clubs – made a point in the media bag when he left Belmar early.
Canterbury have to regroup before Friday’s clash against the West Tigers at the Leichhardt Oval. Pin-up Jackson Hastings wanted to play against Barrett after pulling his trigger in Manly and forcing him to start a career on the other side of the world in the Super League.
Clicking on his interest in Sirald, Gould said these discussions would take place in a timely manner, and the council did not think they would be put in such a position so soon.
“We never thought we would be in this situation today … there is a lot of shock and a lot of sadness,” Gould said.
Earlier on Monday, the club issued a statement saying it “sincerely wishes to thank Trent for all his hard work and efforts over the past 18 months at a very difficult time for the club.”
The Bulldogs were the second club Barrett has taken on at the NRL level, having previously left Manley with a decent contract after bringing them to the finals once in three seasons.
Canterbury fired coach Dean Pey in the final months of the 2020 season and quickly switched to Barrett, who that year played a major role in Penrith’s grand final as Ivan Cleary’s assistant.