- Jul 5, 2008
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Lets send Elliot+Nappa+Waddell to Parra this oseason and we can poach Paulo for + 3 years .. 3PA lets make it happen.Knights star ringing rival coaches; Eels in fight to keep young gun: Transfer Whispers
Fox Sports from Fox Sports
July 14th, 2021 9:38 am
The Newcastle Knights are set to re-sign Kurt Mann but the future of Connor Watson remains up in the air.
Speaking on Sky Sports’ ‘Big Sports Breakfast’, the Daily Telegraph’s Dean Ritchie said Mann is locked in on a two-year deal despite suggestions he could be on the way out.
It comes after a report from the Newcastle Herald indicating just as much about Mann, while the local paper also reported Watson had been personally calling rival coaches.
“There was talk last week that they may not re-sign him but the mail now is he has secured a new two-year deal,” he said.
As for teammate Watson, Ritchie said the utility is set to “test the open market”.
“Some sources up in Newcastle are saying he’s actually taking to ringing clubs and coaches himself,” he added.
“Cronulla is one club that has been linked to Connor Watson, I’m not sure how much depth is in that but we will find out.”
Watson is off-contract at the end of the year and would be a welcome addition at a number of clubs given his versatility and work ethic.
Ritchie though believes Watson will not leave the Knights.
“I think Watson will stay,” he said.
“He’s just testing his value which he is entitled to do. I think he will re-sign at some stage but Kurt Mann is locked in.”
RIVAL CLUBS EXPRESS INTEREST IN EELS GUN
Elsewhere, The Australian’sBrent Read reports that two clubs are circling Parramatta five-eighth Dylan Brown.
Brown is locked up until the end of the 2022 season but has a player option for 2023 and will be allowed to talk to rival teams from November 1.
Read reports that the Eels would hate to lose Brown but they face a tough challenge in deciding who to extend and let go.
The 21-year old will be the first of several Eels looking for a new deal with Clint Gutherson, Reed Mahoney, Isaiah Papali’i, Ryan Matterson and Junior Paulo off-contract at the end of 2022.
Brown has quickly established himself as one of the best defenders in the game at five-eighth but still has plenty of room to improve in attack.
Gutherson and Mahoney will be two priorities for the Eels and it is understood talks to extend the Eels fullback already started earlier in the year.
Papali’i meanwhile took a $200,000 paycut to sign with the Eels and has been one of the team’s best, meaning he could be in line for a payrise.