As the Parramatta Eels prepare for their first Grand Final appearance in 13 years, a club legend and former captain has called on the club to welcome a controversial club icon back into the fold.

Two-time Dally M Medal winner and Eels superstar Jarryd Hayne has been a notable absence from the pre-game narrative, shunned by everyone including his former club after he was convicted of sexual assault and spent time in prison.

Though the conviction was overturned by the courts at the start of the year and another trial awaits Hayne in the future, the club has not reached out to – or even mentioned – Hayne, who was a large contributor to the success of their 2009 season, since they qualified for the grand final.

It's something that doesn't sit well with former Parramatta captain and 233-game Eel Tim Mannah, who still maintains a close personal friendship with Hayne. He has questioned why Hayne's huge influence has seemingly been redacted from club history despite having his sentence overturned.

“There are a lot of people lining up to throw stones at Jarryd,” Mannah told News Corp.

“Jarryd is still a massive Parra fan and that's a credit to his character.

“He's been shunned a little bit, not just from the Eels but people in general.

“His name is a bit taboo but I really hope he can be embraced by the club. His passion for Parra is still there. I know how excited he is for the boys, he can't wait to watch the grand final.

“Me and Jarryd both want to see the Eels win the premiership we dreamed of and finally get that monkey off the club's back after 36 years.”

The Grand Final is a notable date for Hayne, as it was the night of the 2018 Grand Final on which the alleged incident occurred.

Despite his involvement in the march to the 2009 decider, footage used by the club in highlights and memorial packages this week has been notably bereft of the former star – one of only three Eels players to win the game's highest individual honour.

The decision to omit him has raised questions from certain corners, who question why he is being erased from the history of the club despite having the conviction overturned in court.

TOWNSVILLE, AUSTRALIA - MAY 18: Tim Mannah of the Eels looks on during the round 10 NRL match between the North Queensland Cowboys and the Parramatta Eels at 1300SMILES Stadium on May 18, 2019 in Townsville, Australia. (Photo by Ian Hitchcock/Getty Images)

“I think Jarryd found himself in the wrong place at the wrong time. I don't know what started the fall, but there's no denying the talent he had and what he could do.

“As his mate, I always like to remember his career and what he did.

“It's been hard to see him go through tough times.

“At the height of his career, there was a stage where he was everyone's hero and a household name. To see what he went through after that was tough, but Jarryd will always be my friend and I've always been there for him.

“People talk about Tom Trbojevc and Latrell Mitchell in the last few years with individual performances, but nothing will ever beat Jarryd in 2009.

“You can argue other guys in the team played well, but if it wasn't for Hayne's magic, there's no way we would've made the grand final.

“For all the noise that comes when you say his name… you can't take away from the player he was."

Hayne played 191 of his 214 career NRL games in the blue and gold.