An assistant coach wearing club gear with the Penrith Panthers logo smiles as he looks across a field before a game.

Canterbury Bulldogs name Cameron Ciraldo as NRL head coach from 2023

Cameron Ciraldo has signed a five-year deal to take over as Canterbury head coach next season.

The in-demand Penrith assistant has helped mastermind the defending premiers’ climb to dominance under Ivan Cleary.

However, Ciraldo has decided to take the step up into the head coach role at the Bulldogs after previously knocking back the Wests Tigers’ job.

Interim Bulldogs coach Mick Potter was keen to stay on after taking over from sacked coach Trent Barrett earlier this season.

However, Canterbury general manager of football Phil Gould wanted Ciraldo — who has been in various coaching roles at the Panthers since 2014 — to fill the position.

Ciraldo’s arrival at Belmore will likely keep star playmaker Matt Burton at the club.

Burton worked with Ciraldo at the Panthers before linking up with the Bulldogs this season.

Camerone Ciraldo’s signing will likely mean Matt Burton (pictured) stays with the Bulldogs.(Getty Images: Matt King)

“As the club continues to build for long-term, sustained success, we are pleased Cameron shares the vision of ensuring our football programs are best-in-class,” a Bulldogs club statement read.

The Panthers confirmed Ciraldo would depart the club at the end of the season.

“On behalf of all at Panthers, we would like to congratulate Cameron for his appointment as an NRL head coach,” Panthers chief executive Matt Cameron said in a statement.