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The Roar


'To my family, get f--ked': Cooper Johns quits the NRL to take up a surprising new job

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15th January, 2024
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NRL five-eighth Cooper Johns has announced that he is to step away from rugby league – and take up a job with Kyle Sandilands and Jackie O on Sydney radio.

The player posted the news on his Instagram account and appeared on the Kyle and Jackie O show this morning to confirm his decision.

He had been without an NRL deal since his Manly contract expired at the end of last year and described his move away from the game as for ‘a bit’.

“We’re not sure what he does yet but we’ve just secured his services,” said Sandilands.

“The reason why we got Coops is because I thought he’s very, very good. We were paranoid and thought ‘we’ve got to secure this guy’.”

Johns himself added “Nobody really knew what I was doing and I don’t actually know what I’m doing either” on the show, but in his social media post, detailed the revelation that he had on holiday at the end of the 2023 NRL season.

Johns is known for his humour – he anointed himself MVP of last year’s Pre-Season Challenge – and posted in a typically self-deprecating style and tagging the likes of Harry Grant, Cam Munster, Brandon Smith and Tyran Wishart from his time at the Melbourne Storm as well as Sea Eagles centre Brad Parker – as well as former coach Craig Bellamy and famous father and uncle, Matty and Andrew Johns.

“Loved my time in the @nrl but after some late nights pondering over a couple of schooners of Malibu and coke no sugar I’ve decided to step away for a bit and switch out the leather pig skin for a microphone,” he wrote.


“Never in my days would I have expected such an outpouring of sorrow, grief and emotion. But in all seriousness I’ll never forget the lifetime friends I’ve made & the ones I hope I never see again (@bradparker04 @harrrygrantt & @tyranwishart) just to name a few.

“The memories…so many to pick from… first game… first try…first offseason scandal shoutout to @munster94 @hecticcheese.

“And finally to all my coaches particularly Craig Bellamy …who refused to select me regardless of mediocre form and numerous bribes, don’t expect a reference when you’re looking for another club to drag through the mud.

“And finally to my family, who cause me nothing but stress… get f****d. Is this the end who knows…one thing I do know is rugby league is the greatest game of all.”