CANBERRA, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 27: Addin Fonua-Blake of the Warriors is tackled during the round three NRL match between the Canberra Raiders and the Warriors at GIO Stadium on March 27, 2021, in Canberra, Australia. (Photo by Mark Nolan/Getty Images)

The New Zealand Warriors have not yet given up hope of Addin Fonua-Blake remaining with the club into 2025.

Fonua-Blake requested a release in recent times, dropping a bombshell on the club by asking for it to be immediate on compassionate grounds so he could move back to Sydney and be with his parents.

After disucssion between the prop, his management and senior figures at the club, it was eventually decided that he would play out at least the 2024 season with the Warriors.

Contracted until the end of 2026 though, his request to be released isn't a story that's about to disappear from the news cycle as clubs in Sydney - including the Canterbury Bulldogs, Wests Tigers, St George Illawarra Dragons and Cronulla Sharks - circle.

But speaking on SEN Sportsday, Club CEO Cameron George said Fonua-Blake remaining with the club in 2025 is still an option.

“First and foremost, for us was working with Addin through compassionate grounds and like any player we've had in the past, we've always had an open mind with our approach. He was equal to that and didn't want to let us down as well,” George said.

“He's here this year and still working through what his future looks like beyond 2024 – so there's any number of options, one could be he may wish to remain.

“We're working with his management, and working with Addin, making sure he's ok in the immediate future. What happens in the longer term, time will tell.”

It has been widely reported that Fonua-Blake will need to be replaced by someone for the Warriors to agree to let him go early in a potential player swap type scenario.

A player of Fonua-Blake's potential though - he made the 2023 Dally M team of the year - will be hard to source.

Andrew Webster has had a desire to continue developing the club's youth though, something he will have more opportunity to do in 2024 following the release of Josh Curran to the Canterbury Bulldogs.

The 2023 prelimniary finalists confirmed they want a player of Fonua-Blake's calibre though.

“Addin is high-end. We need to ensure that we do what's best for our footy club, Addin and his management know that, we're not the first club to go through this process. We'll work with the club he may have some interest in, or vice versa, and see what we can get out of that," George added.

“We'll want a player (of his calibre) because we have to fill the spot if Addin does go – those options are certainly on the table in due course if need be.”