Catalans Dragons are considering legal action against Israel Folau after the controversial code-hopper announced his decision to join Queensland Rugby League side Southport Tigers.

Sat alongside billionaire Clive Palmer, Folau revealed his return to rugby league on Friday in a move to the Tigers despite being contracted to the Dragons.

The French Super League side were shocked to learn of Folau's decision, with the 32-year-old originally having signed a two-year deal with Catalans to remain on their list until the end of this season.

Dragons football boss Alex Chan stated his disappointment and reminder media of Folau's obligations to the club.

"Our stance hasn't changed," Chan told PA.

"We've given Israel and his family time to get back together and make sure that everything is going good and we expected that, once Izzy found some stability, we've left the door open.

Clive Palmer & Israel Folau Press Conference To Announce Folau Signing With Southport Tigers
BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA - MAY 21: Israel Folau and Clive Palmer speak to the media during a press conference at the Hilton Hotel on May 21, 2021 in Brisbane, Australia. (Photo by Chris Hyde/Getty Images)

"We still hold his contract, he's still a registered player with Catalans Dragons. It was a big shock to see what was put out there.

"We can't just let things happen like this. I've got to meet with the club president and our directors but I've already made our legal team aware of the situation that is starting to unfold.

"We need to start being pro-active from our end in case things start to escalate and go nasty."

After having not heard from Folau throughout the off-season, the Dragons left the former Wallabies star out of their 29-man squad in March.

Folau still requires the approval of registration from the QRL to feature for the Tigers, with the 32-year-old looking to return to playing football down under after having his contract with Rugby Australia terminated in 2019.