Incoming Canterbury coach Trent Barrett has his hopes set on luring Manly’s Manase Fainu to Belmore to secure their first long-term hooker since Michael Ennis.
New Corp has revealed that Barrett, who coached Manley from 2016-18, has contacted three Sea Eagles players to make the switch, headlined by Fainu.
It is believed that the two other players linked to Canterbury are Manly forwards Corey Waddell and Jack Gosiewski.
Waddell’s contract ends at the season’ conclusion, while Gosiewski’s contract with the Sea Eagles lasts until the end of 2021.
#NRL Incoming @NRL_Bulldogs coach Trent Barrett has put together a list of Manly players he wants to lure to the club including Manase Fainu, ,who is still dealing with off-field drama and a pending court case. https://t.co/xDcXhkpk7P
— NRL News (@NRLNEWS) August 17, 2020
Since losing Ennis in 2015, the Bulldogs are yet to find an established long-term hooker, with Fainu hoping to be the big-name recruit to fill the void.
However, there are two major set backs that the club is set to face, with Fainu awaiting trial on the charge of wounding a person with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.
Due to delayed court hearings from the impacts of COVID-19, Fainu’s trial is unlikely to conclude before 2021, with the Manly player pleading not guilty to all charges.
Despite these charges, the Sea Eagles are still unlikely to cut Fainu from his deal before it expires at the end of 2021.
It is also said that Barrett has called Sea Eagles skipper Daly Cherry-Evans to give his thoughts on Bulldogs playmaker Kieran Foran.
The Bulldogs are yet to make a deal Foran is willing to sign after the off-contract playmaker expressed his hopes of staying at the club earlier this season.
Last month, News Corp revealed that Canterbury made an initial offer to Foran for a one-year deal worth less than $400,000.
Foran’s management then asked the club to revise the offer as there is growing interest from the Tigers and Knights.
The Bulldogs are also in the process of cleaning out coaching staff, leaving Barrett to assemble a new coaching roster.
Sea Eagles assistant coach John Cartwright’s name has been linked to a move to Belmore to assist Barrett. However, Cartwright is keen on taking over from Paul Green at North Queensland.
— Bulldogs Fans (@NRLBulldogsFans) August 12, 2020
Josh Addo-Carr is also on the radar for Canterbury and the Tigers, with the Bulldogs remaining humble as the Tigers’ are yet to contact his new manager, Mario Tartak, about the winger joining the club.
If Addo-Carr does accept the Tigers’ offer, he is likely to play fullback with Adam Doueihi, as Wests are looking for more explosiveness and pace in their fullback.
FOX HUNTING 🦊🦊🦊
— Telegraph Sport (@telegraph_sport) August 17, 2020