Parra’s loss of Folau is Parra’s gain

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    The rollercoaster ride known as Israel Folau’s career has taken another acute turn with news trickling out of Sydney that Folau could be a New South Wales Waratah by mid-week.

    Two questions immediately come to mind:

    – Have the Parramatta Eels really lost out?
    – Why would the Waratahs want another mercenary playing the game purely for financial gain?

    Eels coach Ricky Stuart wears his heart on his sleeve and was rightfully dirty on Folau and his decision to back out on a deal with Parramatta.

    “I’d rather know today about the dishonourable characteristics of Israel than pay him all the money that we tried to secure over the past eight weeks, then find out about the way he operates,” Stuart told The Sunday Telegraph.

    “I know it’s an easy throwaway line, but success is built on culture and our club is plus one in culture by not having Israel.”

    With these strong words, Parramatta have lost out on Folau but gained something just as important. Stuart has put pride back into his new club without officially coaching a game.

    Rugby league is the great survivor. Time after time individuals have tried to hurt the game we love.

    Rugby league has been slugged in the jaw more times than Rocky Balboa. But just like Rocky, rugby league gets back up. Folau has thrown his right hook and missed by plenty.

    Despite knowing full well what they’re getting themselves into, the Waratahs are reportedly on the verge of capturing Folau’s signature.

    Do Wendell Sailor or Lote Tuqiri ring a bell?

    You can’t question Sailor or Tuqiri’s application in the 15-man game. They took the money offered to them and tried their best. But upon returning to the National Rugby League both admitted to catching influenza while watching all those scrums and line-outs.

    Even Mark Gasnier took the quick cash in Europe before returning to the NRL as quickly as humanly possible.

    Folau recently quit the AFL and openly admitted he wanted to play at Parramatta with his mates. If rugby union is his third option, why would the Waratahs want him?

    How much is Folau going to really give them?

    Waratahs chief executive Jason Allen hinted to The Sunday Telegraph Folau was an option in 2013.

    “We’re always interested in quality players and we do have a large portion of our roster off contract in 2014, so we’re talking to a number of agents on a regular basis,” Allen said.

    “Beyond that, our policy is that we don’t make public comment about individual contracts.”

    Parramatta may have just dodged a bullet.

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    The Crowd Says (111)

    • December 3rd 2012 @ 7:02am
      bjt said | December 3rd 2012 @ 7:02am | ! Report

      More like Folau dodging the bullet. Parramatta’s culture is toxic, and the culture of saying one thing and doing another that ricky will bring, will be the result of a massive clean out in a few years.

      • December 3rd 2012 @ 8:12am
        Will Sinclair said | December 3rd 2012 @ 8:12am | ! Report

        It’s a good call BJT.

        It’s hard to remember anyone who has signed with Parramatta from another club and gone from strength to strength, isn’t it?

        • Roar Guru

          December 3rd 2012 @ 12:09pm
          Curtis Woodward said | December 3rd 2012 @ 12:09pm | ! Report

          Hard to pin that on Stuart. He’s been there two seconds.

      • Roar Guru

        December 3rd 2012 @ 8:36am
        steve b said | December 3rd 2012 @ 8:36am | ! Report

        Parramatta’s culture is toxic , oh please ..

        • December 3rd 2012 @ 10:36am
          mushi said | December 3rd 2012 @ 10:36am | ! Report

          Put aside your fan hat for a second.

          They constantly turn over coaches, which essentially says to the players we will never hold you responsible and makes it impossible to build an on field culture of any constructive consequence.

          You look at all the players and ask where has the development been? When was the last time you went hey they are getting more than the sum of their parts out of this group? You look at the Sandow experiment and it screams lack of planning in terms of resource allocation, talent selection and getting buy in to the team.

          It isn’t toxic in a getting locked up due to weekend festivities, but it is a horrible culture when it comes to nurturing: on field performance, the concepts of the team before the individual, growth in younger footballers and most importantly, an enduring ethos at the club that was once apparent in the hindmarsh heyday.

          It all stems from the front office with any semblance of a plan. The pursuit of an outside back with all their spare cash was just the typical modern day eels move for mediocrity with headlines

          • Roar Guru

            December 3rd 2012 @ 11:50am
            steve b said | December 3rd 2012 @ 11:50am | ! Report

            Hang on minute Mushi ,the word toxic even in our worst year is a bit much , yes we have had our problems with the front office ,and retention but to say our culture is toxic is nothing more than insulting , we have new programs in place and we are building towards a brighter future . For retention and development , our new ceo is a breath of fresh air and has already started to improve things at the club , Stuart’s roll is not just as coach but to help in all areas of the above . And the Sandow experiment as you put was Kearneys influence . And as for the bloody outside back mate he come begging us not the other way around and we tried our best to assist , so mate you know where to stick your opinions on our modern day move for mediocrity ..

            • December 3rd 2012 @ 11:58am
              Chop said | December 3rd 2012 @ 11:58am | ! Report

              As a 20+ year Parra fan, I think a toxic culture is the only explanation.

              After years of reasonable stability with Brian Smith the club has averaged a coach a year basically and the on field performances have matched the ineptitude of the front office.

              The Folau thing is a non-issue as far as I’m concerned, it stinks of double standards from the NRL with Schubert not applying the same assessment for Folau as he did with Gasnier. The NRL is still a basketcase in my opinion.

              • December 4th 2012 @ 12:12pm
                Jeff Cook said | December 4th 2012 @ 12:12pm | ! Report

                Chop,
                No double standards here . And no comparision . Folau brought up in sydneys west off to melb,
                and through their relationship with feeder club ends up playing for Qld. Bigger bucks in brisbne i`m off.
                Massive dough with GSW i`m in . Now i`m bored so it`s to parra with me mates. ( is there a trend here ? ) Folau say`s it is`nt the money,so when the parra deal looks shakey . I always wanted to be a dual international. Say hello waratahs.
                Now to Gasiner , a dragons junior duded with failing third party deals. Looks for the bigger quid and find it . Returning to his old club ! 4 year deal back ended,100,000 first year,150,000 second year.
                His heart and legs were`nt in it so he retired,leaving the club in a sond financal position

                So there is NO comparision with Gasiner and Folau.

            • December 3rd 2012 @ 2:06pm
              mushi said | December 3rd 2012 @ 2:06pm | ! Report

              You need a special perspective to think Folau was begging the Eels, the correct term is beggaring. If he was begging he’d have signed for the minimum. If he was begging then the Eels wouldn’t have had to go to the NRL and beg them to change the rules. If he was begging he’d have signed the ridiculously over priced contract for a winger/centre that was offered to him.

              Instead he’s smiling as he looks forward to penning a new deal elsewhere whilst the Eel’s will be listed in the credits as the patsy, which is far better than the chump that pays an outside backs playmaker money on top of some other bad contracts.

              If Stuart is to have any hope of rebuilding this team with a long term plan then he can’t afford another bad contract.

              It is also a bit rich to sight the Kearny influence? Kearny wasn’t Kerveil or Adaboli, some rouge trader that went nuts outside his authority and perpetrated a grandiose fraud., he was empowered and endorsed by the front office.

              So tell me with this new plan –how does it differ from the last three long term plans that seemed to have the lifespan of a mayfly?

    • December 3rd 2012 @ 7:04am
      Gremlin said | December 3rd 2012 @ 7:04am | ! Report

      Obviously Isreal and his manager think he is a million dollar a year player in his first year back. A bit rich for me, when you consider JT and Inglis might get that depending on the cap, and both these guys can turn a game single handed.

    • December 3rd 2012 @ 7:21am
      Steve said | December 3rd 2012 @ 7:21am | ! Report

      He won’t be on much at the Tahs and he’ll be back at the Eels in 2014. I’m not sure why everybody is so fired up. You ask why the Tahs would want another mercenary. I think they just want another quality player. You don’t really think pro sportspeople play for just the love of the game. I have a nephew who is in the Tigers U/20’s, he loves rugby league and would love it even if he was playing in the bush. The reality is the only reason he goes to the gym and trains all off season is in the hope of making money.

      Comment left via The Roar’s iPhone app. Download it now [http://itunes.apple.com/au/app/the-roar/id327174726?mt=8].

    • December 3rd 2012 @ 8:11am
      Will Sinclair said | December 3rd 2012 @ 8:11am | ! Report

      I think it’s clear why the Waratahs would sign Folau – he will pay for himself many times over in terms of media exposure and bums on seats.

      He may or may not be a success on the park, but there is no doubt he will generate interest in the Waratahs.

      And, apart from anything else, he will get the chance to play against one of the great sporting teams of world sport – the British & Irish Lions. That alone will make the season worthwhile for him.

      • December 3rd 2012 @ 9:12am
        Happy Hooker said | December 3rd 2012 @ 9:12am | ! Report

        Like all those bums on seats that came to watch GWS play?

        Israel isn’t smart enough to realise the hugeness of the Lions tour. I sure hope he doesn’t end up with the Tahs.

        • Roar Guru

          December 3rd 2012 @ 12:12pm
          Curtis Woodward said | December 3rd 2012 @ 12:12pm | ! Report

          Look at Del Piero at Sydney FC. If the team isnt winning the team could have Beckham and Messi and people in Sydney still wouldnt care if they were losing. Imagine the state if the Waratahs are losing and Folau is struggling

    • December 3rd 2012 @ 8:16am
      Matt Moule said | December 3rd 2012 @ 8:16am | ! Report

      Has no one learnt a lesson from the others? He is a money hungry winger! That’s rights that’s all he is is a winger! Hope he never comes back to league, the game is way to good for you mate. He loves money more then his church and family. Just come out and say you play for money and thats all. Don’t pretend you have values.

      • December 3rd 2012 @ 3:02pm
        julie scott said | December 3rd 2012 @ 3:02pm | ! Report

        @ Matt well said I could’nt have put it any better myself. Good bloody ridance Falou u have done the Eels a huge favour the Waratahs can have u ur a greedy blood sucking leach u have no values at all. I can also hold my head up high as i would never be so low as 2 refer 2 any team as toxic it is insulting disgusting & so pathetic……Is there no respect anymore!!!

        • December 3rd 2012 @ 3:26pm
          oikee said | December 3rd 2012 @ 3:26pm | ! Report

          🙂 I get all warm and fuzzy when i see others who still believe in good ethics and morals and values.

          I said the other day that rugby league needs changes made, we are the sitting ducks, the scapgoats of other codes.
          Our code has never gone and tried to poach star players directly from other codes.
          You can be sure that every time a situation like this comes up that other codes sit and wait, like spiders to pounce.
          He had already talked to union awhile back according to reports.

          The people who follow rugby league seem to be the ones who are being let down every time this happens in our code. I would rather them never to return than have to sit through this rubbish every 6 months.
          If they leave ARLC, then “SHUT THE DAMM GATE.”

          I am not sure what is worse, players doing as they please or a code that refuses to do anything to keep these players in our game. Make the damm system foolproof, can you do that, walk into any legal office and get them to work it out for you, but dont just sit around year after year and watch it keep happening.
          Struth Nora, if it was the Yanks they would have it sorted yesterday.
          We must be the only code ever that gets sand kicked in our face constantly only to say “thank you sir, can i have another mouthful”, every time.

          I see Eddie Jones has raised his head again and put in 2 cents worth, like clockwork.
          From now on i am going to list all the junior ex-union players to our code, so we know who is likely to try it on.
          Anyone notice that, this is another loophole needs shutting, dont come to our code in the first place if you just want training to leave 2 years later. we are not your minders or paying for your union training.
          This folly has to stop, to be taking for fools is plain objectionable and ungodly.

          • December 3rd 2012 @ 3:53pm
            Greg said | December 3rd 2012 @ 3:53pm | ! Report

            maybe your code should stop poaching junior union players? Develop your own? its a weird concept to league but it could work. Im sure every NZ union fan would love your poaching scouts to stop acting like vultures at all the NZ 1st15 games.

            • December 3rd 2012 @ 4:08pm
              oikee said | December 3rd 2012 @ 4:08pm | ! Report

              Maybe if your private schools would allow both codes we would not have to poach.
              You talk to them, not me.

              • December 3rd 2012 @ 4:15pm
                Greg said | December 3rd 2012 @ 4:15pm | ! Report

                Im public school. As are many of the wallabies. The reason why many of them end up in private schools is because these schools have huge union traditions, and can play in front of thousands of spectators. Why wouldnt you want to play for these schools if your good at union?

              • December 3rd 2012 @ 4:32pm
                Crosscoder said | December 3rd 2012 @ 4:32pm | ! Report

                Well the private school traditions are going to be really tested now on, by AFL making inroads into schools such as Waverly College,Cranbrook.Initially soccer,now the AFL be afraid..

                Poaching junior players bit of navel gazing needed,the Ellas,Fairfax,Beale,all played rl before they felt a Gilbert.

                What a laugh M OÇonnor of the ARU is at rl carnivals looking for talent.He is not the only scout BTW.

                Rubbish the reason many go to private schools is for a quality education first involving discipline,tradition and rugby union 3rd.Players such as Kurtley Beale orginally a rl junior ,was offered a scholarship at Joeys for his rl sporting prowess.
                Big brother,under moderation in a rl thread.
                That they can play at times in front of large numbers of spectators,is due to the requirement all students be in attendance for the 1st XV,and the old boys come along for a howdy do.Been there done that.

              • December 3rd 2012 @ 10:46pm
                Greg said | December 3rd 2012 @ 10:46pm | ! Report

                I’d say half the nrl felt a gilbert before a league ball

              • December 4th 2012 @ 2:56am
                Mr Taylor said | December 4th 2012 @ 2:56am | ! Report

                The NZ national school sevens competition played yesterday and shown live on Sky was attended by scouts of all NRL clubs and the player of the tournament was offered a contract straight after the final whistle and another one in the tournament team was signed by Newcastle Knights today and more siging to come in the next couple of days. It was mention by Ken Laban yesterday that more than 50 players in yesterdays tournament were already on NRL contracts.
                They sure know where the talents comes from.

              • December 4th 2012 @ 6:30am
                Crosscoder said | December 4th 2012 @ 6:30am | ! Report

                Well they appear to have chosen a better option of late ,on that basis Greg.

                And the best days of running union was in the days of Campese,the Ellas and Fairfax all touching the rl pill first.
                My first touch was a Gilbert,must have seen the light.

              • December 4th 2012 @ 6:36am
                Crosscoder said | December 4th 2012 @ 6:36am | ! Report

                Correct Mr Taylor,just as ru scouts like M OConnor attend rl carnivals.
                And BTW the Tigers have secured players from Fiji with a ru background.

                And with AFL now entering the ru Private schools in Sydney,Aust S15 clubs may have to go over to NZ tournaments to look for talent.
                The irony of the poaching equation,in England( the spiritual home of ru and where there is a huge playing base),they still feel the need to poach rl players..

                We know the French ru did the same despite the game being supposedly amateur.They sure gave a new meaning ,to the word amateur.

            • December 3rd 2012 @ 7:00pm
              Lovey said | December 3rd 2012 @ 7:00pm | ! Report

              Not a bad point, I guess the poaching goes both ways. But you do agree that there should be disincentives for star players to leave in the first place? I don’t know governing bodies can restrict trade, but although clubs are in competition with each other they could show some solidarity in this matter. To that extent, it is Parramatta’s own fault, they should have been very careful with Team Folau. That’s why I think the spin that this is a win for the culture of the club, or RL in general, is way off.

              • December 3rd 2012 @ 7:46pm
                Crosscoder said | December 3rd 2012 @ 7:46pm | ! Report

                Lovey.There is a marquee player allowance ,there are 3rd party deals,whcih obviously should be upped.The salary cap should be increased in yr 1 to $5.5m,then 5.75m,6m.6.5m then finally 6.8m.
                SOO money should be doubled ,tests for Aust ditto.
                the code cannot in any wat enforec a restraint of trade.Tutty case was a classic example.

                First point Folau approached the Eels saying he wanted out of GWS and looked at playing with his brother at the club.He apparently was not happy with his Mgr Moses.He stated he wanted to play with that club,the club did not approach him.

                So the ball started rolling,the eels were restricted in their cap, and the code placed a value of $400,000 on him,meaning the club would exceed the cap.

                The NRL aka Schubert with no doubt the Storm looking over his shoulder(one would suggest) said no way Jose,reduce your current player numbers to fit him in.

                The tooing and froing with the NRL and no doubt Moses had already been in touch with the ru mob,lasted far too long.

                The bulk of the blame lies with Folau and Moses,their word means zilch
                The snail’s crawl decision making by the NRL admin(Schubert has to bear some responsibility),was responsible for the last minute tip over the edge The right money was finally offered,but his decision was already made.

                As Stuart stated succinctly,the club is better off without a player who is not committed or deceitful(words to that effect).We only want players fully committed to the cause.
                IOW people you would want in the trenches with you.

                Perhaps it could be classified to a degree as a PR failure,on the other hand it shows a strong admin who will not let a player dictate terms ,as though he is the only player in the code.

                If Folau had stated his intent was to go to union full stop,instead of sucking people in,we would not be debating the issue now.

                Really it is a win for no one,except perhaps a S15 club.And if he stuffs up there,they won’t be smiling either.

          • December 3rd 2012 @ 4:43pm
            julie scott said | December 3rd 2012 @ 4:43pm | ! Report

            Nothing wrong with the old warm & fuzzy Oikee cheers & a very true & awesome comment Oikee.Thank God i do have morals values & respect etc etc obviously its gone & lost on sme pple which is truly sad & disgusts me!!!

        • Roar Guru

          December 3rd 2012 @ 3:39pm
          Curtis Woodward said | December 3rd 2012 @ 3:39pm | ! Report

          The world we live in Julie

          • December 3rd 2012 @ 6:59pm
            julie scott said | December 3rd 2012 @ 6:59pm | ! Report

            Unfortunately that is 2 true Curtis

    • December 3rd 2012 @ 8:21am
      oikee said | December 3rd 2012 @ 8:21am | ! Report

      I thought this was just going to be another fluff piece, you have captured more the spirit of what rugby league and the clubs need to be showing. If he does sign for the Tahs, then hopefully we wont have all the little hangeroners going to watch him play.
      I would keep a eye on that.
      Ricky learnt the hard way. He was bending over backwards and, well,,, he got you know what for his troubles. Hope he can sit down soon. 😉
      Our game needs to introduce year contracts, from 24th Dec to 26th dec, we will give them xmas day off. 🙂
      We also need to introduce the “shut the gate” policy.
      If they leave, good and fine. What league fans can deal with is not being used like waste paper for there return, as ricky found out.

      I seen mentioned 3 million for Falou at the Eels, ? 3 million. Ok, so now that money can go to our future, the juniors, and Ricky, no more nonsense mate. Your a coach, be a coach. Dead set, your failiers are starting to rack up mate.

      I am going to write to my club and ask them not to invite Israel back, even if he wants another crack. I think a 1 strike policy is what is needed. Our code should be making the rules, not these muppets. And that is the problem right there, if you leave your front door wide open, people will continue to walk in and out as they please. ?
      Lesson learned, Amen.
      Good report Curtis, and nice work, holding on to write a few days after the fact, patience is a virtue. Cheers.

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