Newcastle Knights management has announced that current Parramatta coach Brian Smith will take over the reins as coach at the end of the season.
Current Knights coach Michael Hagan will be moving to Parramatta for the 2007 season on a three-year deal, and the Knights have snapped up Smith to a similar three-year contract.
Having been searching for a coach for the past month, last year's wooden spooners turned to Smith after approaches towards Tim Sheens of the Wests Tigers and Matthew Elliott of the Canberra Raiders were both turned away.
The effective coach swap will add further spice to the first round of the NRL season, with the teams facing off against each other in Newcastle on Saturday.
Smith recently voiced his desires to continue coaching at an NRL club beyond the 2006 season, and is sure to have his work cut out for him when he arrives at the Knights.