NRL Rd 8 - Eels v Cowboys
SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - JULY 03: Clinton Gutherson of the Eels makes a break during the round eight NRL match between the Parramatta Eels and the North Queensland Cowboys at Bankwest Stadium on July 03, 2020 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Matt King/Getty Images)

Very rarely do fans of multiple clubs on NRL social media come together.

It takes a lot to unite fans of multiple NRL outfits for the greater good.

Even the hottest of issues, such as the recent Peter V'Landys rule changes, divide fans. Most of the time the line is drawn on club lines. Whatever works best for the club is what the fans support.

Recently we saw the fan bases merge to support the Australian Olympic team and laugh off all who dared criticise their efforts.

Twice, yes twice, in a matter of a week, NRL Twitter and Facebook came together in universal agreement.

That Clint Gutherson is not worth anywhere near a million dollars a season.

Don't for a second think I'm anything but a huge fan of King Gutho. I've written many a time how much I love the Parra captain.

That said, you would be hard-pressed to find anyone outside of the Gutherson household who believes he is worth a million dollars a season. Especially to the Eels.

I also maintain that there's no way Gutherson expects to be made a seven-figure sum to remain at the Eels either. This looks a power move by his management team.

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 24: Clint Gutherson of the Eels runs with the ball during the round two NRL match between the Canterbury Bulldogs and the Parramatta Eels at ANZ Stadium on March 24, 2019 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Jason McCawley/Getty Images)

Gutherson is reported to have accepted below market value in his prior contract and is looking for the club to repay his sacrifice.

I was shocked at this news. Gutherson may have, reportedly, become the first player to ever sacrifice contract value to stay at his current club.

Considering the Eels massive salary cap pressures that have recently hit the media, it's a bit of a shock for Gutherson's management to be demanding such an eye-watering salary.

Again, I don't believe for a second that's the actual figure, but for a club captain to come out at this time raises a few eyebrows.

Then again this is the same captain who has no reservations in delivering messages to teammates, on camera, that are a little less than friendly.

Of course, I'm poking fun but what is not funny, at least for Eels fans, is the fact their salary cap is bursting at the seams.

Mitch Moses was recently re-signed to a mega-money deal but his halves partner Dylan Brown is very much off-contract at the end of 2022.

I can think of a handful of clubs who will be on the phone to Brown's management very early on the morning of November 1st.

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The Sharks, Broncos, Warriors and Raiders are all looking for marquee signings in the halves.

If The Eels can't get a deal done before other clubs are allowed to talk to Brown, there could be serious trouble.

Isaiah Papali'i has been the bargain signing of the season. He's well on track to win the Dally M second-rower of the year award.

The fact he is signed to a bottom dollar deal puts his future in Eels colours at serious risk.

Again there will be a host of clubs lining up to offer the wide-running wrecking ball a deal at three to four times more than his current contract.

Junior Paulo is an Origin quality prop who is on the radar of multiple teams. His re-signing will not come cheap.

You'd have to imagine Ryan Matterson will be chased aggressively by a host of teams. He's shown in the past that his attention can be won by big money.

Both Paulo and Matterson are fowards who can help change the makeup of a side's pack in one swift move.

BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA - OCTOBER 03: Ryan Matterson of the Eels reacts to the loss after the NRL Qualifying Final match between the Melbourne Storm and the Parramatta Eels at Suncorp Stadium on October 03, 2020 in Brisbane, Australia. (Photo by Jono Searle/Getty Images)

The Sharks are crying out for a monster prop with an offload. Paulo's signature would transform their ride right away.

Imagine adding Ryan Matterson to the Dragons pack?

Then there's Reed Mahoney who would have played Origin if not for injury.

The Titans and Broncos could both swoop in and offer huge contracts to bring the young number nine superstar back home.

All of the above becomes almost impossible if the Eels are forced to fork out an extra two or three hundred thousand to retain their skipper and fullback.

If it comes down to either Gutherson or a combo of Brown, Mahoney and Matterson... Well there will need to be a new King at Bankwest Stadium.

Again, I don't believe Gutherson nor his manager believe he's worth a cool million. This is good because it's absolutely not going to happen.


  1. If Parramatta have all these amazing players that any club would want, then why are they losing touch with the top 4?

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