Sydney Roosters’ Joey Manu has revealed he “would love to play” for the All Blacks one day.
The New Zealand born centre old grew up dreaming of playing for the national rugby team and continues to support them.
He especially loves getting behind them during World Cups, watching the All Blacks take down the Springboks in Japan on Saturday.
“Ever since I was young I wanted to be an All Black. I’m still a big fan of them,” Manu told The Sydney Morning Herald.
“Especially when it comes to World Cup’s. It’s a pretty big occasion for pretty much all New Zealanders.
“I love [watching] at the moment but one day I would love to play for them.”
Manu admits that as a youngster he didn’t know much about either code.
“I didn’t know much about the club or about their success or any of that,” Manu said. “When I moved over here… they flew me in week in and week out [for SG Ball].
“I knew they were a good club then that had good family values and all of that. Once I got here, I knew they were a good club.”
Growing up, legendary playmaker Dan Carter and Waikato superstar Mils Muliaina were his idols.
“Dan Carter is probably my favourite and then there are a couple of Chiefs boys – Mils Muliaina – I used to love watching him,” Manu said. “At school I was [a playmaker] because we weren’t very good.
“Sometimes we didn’t even have enough numbers at the games. We were known as a bit of a rough school in our area, down in the Waikato area. There are heaps of good rugby schools and good private schools but we were pretty much getting smashed every week.”
For now, Manu is happy at the Roosters.
“I’m happy-as here for now at the Roosters,” he said. “They gave me an opportunity and they changed my life and my family’s life. I’m real happy here and I love this club.”
Set to come off-contract at the end of next season, the 23-year old sees his future in the tricolours, with his hometown of Tokoroa expecting him to bring home NRL silverware.
“They’re expecting it. They expect one every year now,” Manu said with a laugh. “When you go back there now, everyone has a Roosters jersey.
“There are still a couple of Souths fans and a few other teams but it’s pretty much all Roosters. We have Zane who is from there too so everyone has supported us.