The Manly Sea Eagles have a decision to make amid reports Josh Schuster was promised the five-eighth position when he re-signed with the club.

While he is yet to play at any position this year due to injury, Josh Schuster proved himself as a star of the future in 2021.

A ball-playing edge forward similar to Wade Graham, who began his career in the halves, the 20-year-old undoubtedly has the talent to play at five-eighth.

According to Danny Weidler of 9News, Schuster's management is not happy he is locked into the back row. With Kieran Foran coming off-contract at the end of the season and reports Manly have offered Foran in a player swap deal, it creates an interesting and unwanted problem for the Sea Eagles.

“There was a promise made that is where he would be played and his family was told the same thing,” Weidler said on Channel 9's '100% Footy'.

“Schuster’s management are adamant he should be playing five-eighth and in effect, Manly have been put on notice regarding Schuster and false promises made to him and his family.”

“I feel this could be some agitating to get Schuster out of the club or putting pressure on the Foran re-signing, who has been good for Manly, potentially moving him to hooker,” he added.

While it isn't Schuster who is complaining according to the reports, Manly is unhappy it's an issue at all.

There have been rumours and reports over the last few seasons that Foran could or should play hooker, with the upcoming decision as Schuster returns from injury being the last thing Manly need.

Schuster, who has missed the first portion of the season injured, would be expected to come back in the second-row, and even more so at this point with multiple edge forwards battling injuries of their own.


  1. Sorry, but I don’t believe Manly would ever have “promised” a player that he would be selected to play in a given position. Maybe an exception for DCE, but they would not have signed him as the NRL’s most expensive player with the expectation that he could be used as (say) fullback.

    Clubs sign players in the expectation that they will play in whatever position they are capable of being most useful, at any time.

    They may have told Schuster that they acknowledged he wanted to play five-eight, and “would do whatever they could to make that happen” (or similar), but I can’t see anything stronger than “if Keiran Foran is injured, then we’ll give you the first opportunity to replace him”.

    As you say, Manly need edge back-rowers so that is where he can expect to play.

    Similar to Cronulla, earlier in the season. They put Sausifa Talaki as an edge back-rower because they needed someone to play there, then they moved him to Left Centre because they need someone to play there. I haven’t heard him whingeing.

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