Minichiello not fazed by Stewart NRL talk

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Off-contract Sydney Roosters fullback Anthony Minichiello says he’s unfazed by rumours the NRL glamour club is chasing Manly star Brett Stewart to wear the tri-colours’ No.1 in 2013.

The Roosters are considered favourites to snare the prolific tryscorer, who is believed to be chasing a $2.4 million four-year deal for what would be the 28-year-old’s last big contract.

Minichiello, 32 in May, had little to say on his own future beyond this season, but said he’d need to see the Stewart signing to actually believe it.

“There’s always rumours that everyone’s coming to the Roosters so that doesn’t worry me at all,” Minichiello said on Wednesday.

“Any player that’s off contract is always linked with the Roosters … that’s always been (the way) since I’ve been at the club the past 15 or 16 years.

“There’s always players that are linked to the club and it never happens anyway.”

The signing of Stewart would end Minichiello’s time at the Roosters, with suggestions he could land a deal to finish his career playing rugby union in Europe.

“I’m letting my manager handle all that. Obviously if I wanted to sit down with the Roosters now, they’re willing to sit down and talk about it,” Minichiello said.

“I’m just going to leave that in my manager’s hands and I’m just going to concentrate on playing footy for the Roosters.”

Meanwhile, Minichiello backed calls for 34-year-old Danny Buderus to be considered for a NSW Origin jumper, saying the former Blues skipper’s experience would be of great benefit to the side.

Minichiello himself returned to the Origin arena in 2011 after three years in the representative wilderness, and said Buderus’ age should not count against him at the selection table.

Buderus has not played for the Blues since 2008, having spent three years playing with Leeds in Super League.

Asked if he thought Buderus could still handle Origin football, Minichiello said: “I think he can, yeah.

“Mick Ennis is the incumbent Blues hooker but, obviously, all positions are up for grabs and if he was picked, then I think he’d do a great job.”

© AAP 2014
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