The Parramatta Eels are fighting to retain gun centre Jacob Loko, who has landed a mammoth offer from cashed-up New Zealand Warriors.
We can reveal that Loko – included in this year’s Emerging Blues squad after missing 1 1/2 seasons because of a double knee reconstruction – has been in the Warriors’ sights for months.
The Kiwi offer is believed to be around $500,000 a season – huge money for a kid who’s only played 16 NRL games.
Although they’re on the verge of a roster shake-out, Eels officials desperately want to stop the 20-year-old from becoming the latest junior prodigy to jump ship.
Loko is extremely close to his mother and Parramatta hope her influence will persuade him to stay.
Loko’s centre partner Ryan Morgan is also a free agent and has attracted interest closer to home, with the South Sydney Rabbitohs and Manly Sea Eagles making recent inquiries.