Parramatta is on the brink of securing the futures of six key players in what will be a $7 million coup heading into the pointy end of the season.
The Eels are on the verge of signing stars Michael Jennings and Brad Takairangi after already locking in prop David Alvaro. The NRL club is also believed to be close to extending the contracts of Dylan Brown, Red Mahoney and Maika Sivo.
The Eels will head into Friday’s crucial clash against Brisbane at Suncorp Stadium off the back of the news that all six will remain with the club under Brad Arthur’s rein.
Brown is believed to be in discussions with the club with a three- or four year extension on the table worth around $700,000 per season, according to the Daily Telegraph.
The Eels will also offer Sivo three more years on top of his current contract that lasts until the end of next season, with the new deal worth a reported $1.5 million, while Mahoney faces a similar length for his extension.
Both Jennings and Takairangi are keen on two-year deals, although the club will likely look to settle with one-year extensions.
Alvaro has penned a new two-year extension with the club, keeping him at Bankwest Stadium until the end of 2021.
Both Brown and Mahoney will likely have their contracts secured at season’s end.
Sivo and Mahoney are also in advanced talks with the club and have indicated they’re desire to remain with the Eels.
Parramatta is likely to offer Jennings a pay-cut from his current contract, where the centre signed as a NSW and Kangaroos star. The Eels will be keen to offer Jennings just the one-year as the club looks to develop it’s strong, young centre stocks.
Arthur praised Jennings’ season after battling a knee injury in the twilight of his career.
“The club is dealing with that. Jenko wants to stay, the club wants him to stay, they always sort themselves out,” Arthur told the Daily Telegraph.
“Michael had a really good pre-season and he has played accordingly. He is just starting to find his feet again, coming back from his knee injury.
“We’re expecting his experience in the big games to get us through.”
The Eels will be without Nathan Brown this weekend, who is serving a two-match suspension, as the club looks to re-find its form after a poor performance against Canterbury.
“We’re really excited about what the future holds over the next few weeks but, at the moment, we just have to worry about each week, winning every game and seeing where we end up,” Mahoney said.
“We will worry about finals then but it’s a good, exciting part of the year. We can’t wait. We just have to keep doing what we’re doing.”
Winger Blake Ferguson will return from injury after six weeks on the sidelines, meaning Arthur will have every player available, except for Brown.
“Browny was remorseful and knows he let the emotions get the better of him,” Arthur said. “He probably let his mates down a little bit, he has taken it pretty hard. He knows he did the wrong thing.”