PERTH, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 10: A general view of play during the round one NRL match between the Canterbury Bulldogs and the Melbourne Storm at Optus Stadium on March 10, 2018 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Paul Kane/Getty Images)

Expansion – A subject that’s gained plenty of momentum since the arrival of Peter Beattie as the new ARL Commission Chairman, who has publicly stated that expansion is back on the agenda for the NRL. Mr Beattie believes the NRL must grow in order to survive, with the potential of introducing two new clubs by 2022, to coincide with the new TV rights deal.

When it comes to expansion, the NRL is so far behind, the A-League in its current form covers more territory across Australia since it’s inception just 14 years ago and they’ve been relatively successful on the broader scale geographically, in markets where the NRL doesn’t exist. The NRL has also been defenceless as the AFL have successfully made inroads into rugby league heartland, as the AFL remains the benchmark in relation to expansion across Australia.

The first question to be answered in regards to expansion; is there enough player talent to sustain an 18-team competition? During the ARL/Super League split 21 years ago, there was a combined total of 22 rugby league teams, and the quality of each competition was quite poor. We had a plethora of players who simply weren’t good enough for the top grades and playing talent was not evenly spread.

The NRL must create and nurture more quality talent capable of playing at the first-grade level, in order to sustain two new teams. It’s been confirmed that both states will run their own U/20’s competitions, replacing the NRL’s national U/20s competition, so there will be a healthy amount of talent coming through the lower grade ranks and the responsibility lies with the NRL, QRL and NSWRL to ensure players have clear pathways to make it to first grade.

By 2022, the NRL should look to expand with two new teams in rugby league heartland areas on the NSW Central Coast and the Ipswich/Logan Corridor (west of Brisbane) and two Sydney teams with already assembled playing rosters to relocate to two non-rugby league cities of Perth and Adelaide. I’ll reserve my opinion on which Sydney teams should relocate, but the reality is, no Sydney team turns over a profit and the game as a whole in Sydney has stagnated badly.

The NRL may have to provide a financial incentive to convince Sydney clubs and their players to relocate, but it would be logical for a team like the Cronulla Sharks, who according to Roy Morgan research conducted by Fox Sports, has the lowest number of fans of all the Sydney based clubs and are based in an area with a population of only 200,000. To continue using Cronulla as an example, they should look to relocate to Perth, with a population of 2.5 million or Adelaide with a population of 1.5 million and have either the entire West Coast or South Australia all to themselves. They would keep their loyal fans from the Shire and gain hundreds of thousands of new fans.

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Why should a Sydney team relocate to Perth?

A relocated Sydney team would benefit from thousands of additional club memberships, endless corporate sponsorship opportunities as a stand-alone rugby league club based in a capital city, the golden opportunity to take advantage of the ARU’s decision to scrap the Western Force Super Rugby franchise and the ability to grow the game in AFL heartland, including the potential recruitment of AFL juniors converting to rugby league. Given the time difference out in the West, the majority of their home games should be played during ‘family friendly’ afternoon/twilight timeslots, which would air during prime time in the eastern states. Their home ground would likely be the rectangular, 20,500 seat capacity NIB Stadium or the WACA.

In 1995/96, the Western Reds was the best performing expansion team during that time, averaging home crowds of 13,000, more than most Sydney teams, but were eventually victims of the Super League war, in which they were forced to pay for flights and accommodation of visiting clubs, inevitably sending the club broke. But since then, Perth recently drew a crowd of almost 40,000 for the doubleheader in Round 1 at the new Optus Stadium. From 2013 to 2016, NRL matches taken to Perth, including a Test match, have averaged crowds of more than 20,000.

Why should a Sydney team relocate to Adelaide?

The same reasons as moving to Perth in relation to corporate sponsorship opportunities, memberships and growing the game in AFL heartland. The home ground would be the Adelaide Oval and/or Coopers Stadium.

In 1997, the Adelaide Rams averaged home crowds of 15,000, including the fourth highest crowd of 27,435 that season. Unfortunately, during that time, there simply wasn’t enough quality talent in rugby league to assemble a competitive roster and their lack of on-field success led to their demise. The NRL has taken 3 games to Adelaide since 2010 with a crowd average of 14,000. The Roosters will be heading back to Adelaide Oval in June after they drew a crowd on 21,000 last season against the Storm. The NRL will be taking a State of Origin game to the Adelaide Oval in 2020, which they’d expect to be a sell-out.

Should the NRL decide to expand to Perth and Adelaide, it would be vital from a player depth and roster perspective to also expand reserve grade feeder clubs to these cities as well, via the QRL or NSWRL state competitions, which would also boost opportunities for lower grade players aspiring to make it to the NRL.

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Why expand to the NSW Central Coast?

The resurrection of the (North Sydney) Bears would be the logical option, as they already have a loyal fan base, have the advantage of securing corporate sponsorship, they’d be located 75km up the M1 from their traditional home and being a foundation club, brings tradition. The Central Coast currently has 23 junior clubs and over 7000 players participating in rugby league at all levels. Central Coast Stadium with a capacity of over 20,000, usually comes close to selling out every time the NRL has taken a game there over the past dozen years.

Why expand to the Ipswich/Logan Corridor (west of Brisbane)?

Neighbouring cities Ipswich and Logan have a combined population of over 500,000 and expanding rapidly. They have thousands of juniors, existing QRL reserve grade clubs and corporate sponsorship opportunities which could potentially expand into Brisbane. The only problem is the area doesn’t have a stadium but would base itself out of Suncorp Stadium, which is roughly 30-40 minutes away from these areas until a potential stadium is built. However, the Ipswich train line takes fans directly to Suncorp Stadium so it definitely is not a major problem.

Ipswich and Logan deserve their own team rather than adding a second Brisbane team. A second Brisbane team would dilute the Broncos brand, which is the most profitable club in the NRL. Also, Brisbane contains thousands of Ipswich and Logan expats who would switch allegiances from the Broncos to an Ipswich/Logan NRL club.

It’s important to note that expansion is at least 4 years away, giving the NRL plenty of time to establish itself in Perth and Adelaide, but the ARL Commission needs to be proactive and make the decision on where to expand and relocate as soon as possible, giving new clubs and relocating Sydney clubs enough time to establish their brand in these areas, as well as sufficient time to assemble a competitive playing roster.

As rugby league continues to grow long-term, the NRL could then look at expanding to PNG, a second NZ team, Pacific Islands, Fiji etc; and adopt the NFL (American Football) structure, splitting the competition into two separate conferences or the possibility of the QRL and NSWRL state competitions merging to created an EPL (English Soccer) promotion and relegation system.

47 COMMENTS

  1. The absolute worst thing you can do is expand and not have that team pick up some success and right now, I just don’t think we have enough great halves to push an expansion through.

    That’s the sticking point in my mind.. talent.

    • The problem is, quality halves are not even spread around the comp. You have a former NSW Origin rep in Trent Hodkinson playing reserve grade. Te Maire Martin and Kyle Laybutt are quality halves for the Cowboys who won’t get a start unless there is an injury. Possible return of Todd Carney as for them as well. Brock Lamb relegated to the bench for the Knights to accommodate Watson. The Storm have quality depth in the halves with Rylie Jacks, Billy Walters and Cooper Johns.

      Just naming a few who currently can’t get a starting halves role… also, as I mentioned, expansion is 4 years away so these players plus many more youngsters coming through the grades will be NRL ready by then. Not to mentioncurrent young halves like Cleary and Ash Taylor will only be entering their prime

      • No one wants a team in Perth!!! Put a team in the central coast and another in Ipswich and watch the game grow…

        90% of the population live on the coast and we control 3 of the major cities… make it impossible for the afl to grow here and we will win in the end with our international game

        • No one? I think Perth is the favourite for expansion according to many commentators, journalists, players and fans. 40,000 rocked up to the double header and it sounded like the Rabbitohs had just as many fans as those NZ expats over there that everyone keeps talking about. The Swans have a very strong supporter base in Sydney, according to Roy Morgan research are the most supported club in the AFL with 1.2 million fans. Greater Western Sydney have an estimated 175,000 fans, chewing in to rugby league heartland. I appreciate your feedback markeyy but your opinion is a bit naïve.

      • And plenty will be exiting the game around the same time.

        The simple fact is that it isn’t a good situation when a lot of teams are one injury to a half away from being virtually sunk.

        Yeah, sure, the cowboys having a couple of halves extra is good for them, but I wouldn’t call any situation where an expansion team is one injury to a half away from a lot of glory chasers (that they need to turn up) turning their backs on the team.

    • There are plenty of nrl ready halves in the comp they just haven’t got a crack yet because of either silly coaches or stuck behind the bigger name.

      Look at a player like Cody Walker. An no name to the average nrl fan but people who watched him at east knew he was special, now a starting role at Souths and outshining his opposite half who is a former blue.

      Also people like Hingano who outshined Shaun Johnson at the World Cup or Cleeland who doggies fans have been begging for to get a shot. there are heeps of these “no name players” that dominate QLD Cup, NSW cup, and and super league but haven’t had there shot.

      How about players who already have played plenty of nrl but stuck in reserve, playing different position or injury like Bird, Lamb, Martin, Hampton, Brown, Sezer, Reynolds, Hodkinson, Carney, May, Frawley, Hastings

      You can’t say they aren’t great if they haven’t been givin the chance to do so.

  2. So the solution to the saturation of the market in Sydney is to place a team 75km up the road? Central Coast is a pipe dream. And what is this corporate backing? Are we still talking about John Singleton here, as it will take more than his money to build a successful franchise. I appreciate the time and thought that has gone into the article, but the Central Coast team won’t get off the ground. I would definitely look at 1, if not 2 more teams in Queensland first, then Perth, and so on.

    • According to Greg Florimo, they have that all sorted. There’s no way they’d get approved for an NRL license if they didn’t have the financial backing. They already have a club membership structure and a few thousand members already. With the amount of juniors in the area and the fact they always pack out their stadium, unlike the Roosters which is where they pouch players, they at least deserve an opportunity for NRL inclusion.

      • It will take more than comment from Greg Florimo to convince me that a team on the Central Coast can survive long term. There is just not enough big corporate support in the area. They always pack out their stadium because they play 2 games a year there. The fact is that putting a team on the central coast is not expanding or growing the game. There is more existing support in Queensland and there is more room for growth in WA.

        • I am with you on that count eels – if the Bears were genuinely financial and secure, do you not think that the NRL would have rubber stamped their purchase of the Knights or Titans.
          I just don’t subscribe to the theory that the bears are a genuine opportunity.
          Also the Central Coast, very much like the Goldy, is a place which lacks any real corporate support, yes there are a lot of people in the area but there is no genuine corporate support for much of anything. Its all residential and lifestyle which is not an attractive option to the corporates who sponsor sporting teams.
          Central Coast mariners are a disaster, northern beagles were a disaster – any wonder the AFL is not looking there.

  3. All this talk about there not being enough talent in the game for expansion is rubbish. What does it even mean. My recollection is that the issue was some teams were regularly getting belted by the other more established teams. Surely its to be expected in the first year. Thats a minor issue which normalizes due to the application of salary cap over time.

    And ffs it was 20 years ago when a whole bunch of new teams were added. Lets just add one at a time and see how we go.

    ps. No team will agree to move from Sydney. Only chance is if one goes broke and is forced to move. So lets stop talking about it until that happens.

    • No Sydney team will be willing to leave but perhaps the NRL need to set up criteria via members, crowds etc and if they don’t meet the criteria, then they can either relocate or not have their NRL license renewed. NRL will probably have to play hardball with the Sydney clubs

      • What, you mean the exact same criteria that the ARL set-up that kick Souths out of the Comp in 1999.

        Been there done that. No thanks.

  4. I Believe a team in Perth and a 2nd Brisbane team are necessary straight away and Adelaide to be added in the future to make the NRL a national competition. As for not enough halves in the comp then why do the Cowboys have three and Carney on the way which means they have two 5/8’s and two halfbacks, Wests have three with Benji Marshall as their back up, Cronulla has Hodkinson, Penrith has the player who forced Moylan last season out of the side, Newcastle has Lamb, Manly has Hastings and the list goes on and on most clubs have three halves of first grade standard. there are enough players in the NRL to justify another two teams safely. As for Sydney teams relocating that does not need to happen. Central Coast is a stupid move. Its almost part of Sydney so that’s not expanding the game. Logan – Ipswich would work and could keep the selfish Brisbane Broncos as the sole Brisbane team. If they have a second Brisbane team the Broncos will try everything to start another League war. ⚠

  5. Adelaide wouldn’t play out of Adelaide Oval as the Crows and Power already share it during the winter and its surface surely wouldn’t handle a game of league every second week as well. They may be able to use it once or twice a year and it would likely be during the AFL’s bye weeks where a double header could be staged. Coopers Stadium would probably be the choice although there are some calls here for a new rectangular stadium. With only Adelaide United using Coopers at the moment, a league team would definitely help push for a new one with the increased use.

  6. I Believe expansion is vital for league to move forward, and the central coast is one place that is a priority, there you already have a major fan base that would sell out every week, also Brisbane need another team to offset the Bronco’s monopoly, after that Perth is vital and good for TV ratings.

    There will always be talent in rugby league not enough young guys get a chance to show their talents and we lose them to other sports or retire early, so it is important that we give these players every opportunity.

    The Sydney scene is overcrowded and at least two teams need to be relocated, my opinion those teams would be Cronulla and Easts, they would not lose their identity it would be the same has South Melbourne in the AFL who relocated to Sydney to form the Swans, they still have a club house in Melbourne, this may explain why they have the biggest fan base, also the Gold coast Titans should relocate also as the Goldy has never really been successful, they would be better further north.

    Of course that won’t happen so the next teams that fall on financial hard times should be forced to relocate or die, or teams that do not invest in juniors or have no junior competition.

    I believe the NRL can sustain a 20 to 22 team competition if they got rid of all the useless games before the season starts, not the rep games the nines and trials so forth.

    • Cronulla and East should be made to relocate i agree totally.The trouble is the NRL would never tell the Roosters they have to relocate.They want the Central Coast Juniors well move up there and take the lot.As for the Sharks the NRL need to tell them you either take Perth or a second NZ franchise.Ipswich needs a green light now so in two years they have a stadium ready.Now the interesting one an i really believe it could work if fans just accepted it(can hear the screaming from western sydney as i write this) the final team in the 18 comp is Parramatta Bankstown United,lol and yes i love my eels but it makes sence.In 2 yrs time the comp could be 16 still….so in 4 years time 2 more teams could be brought in to bring it up to 20

    • Penso thousands of people commute every day to Sydney from the central coast because it is so close. They work, study and go watch their Sydney league teams perform on weekends. The Central Coast is not an region that needs a team, they had one and it failed. Expansion is all about what the word means, expand the boundaries our our huge country. Perth is a must and a second Brisbane side but 50.5 kms up the road from Hornsby to Gosford is not expansion mate. In 1967 when Penrith came into the comp that was 55kms away and was considered expansion over 50 years ago but not now.

      As for the Roosters being relocated just shows everybody how you as a South Sydney fan hate the Roosters. I can tell you as a Rooster fan I hate the rabbits but when they kicked you lot out for two seasons Rugby League lost the greatest rivalry in the history of the game. It was not the same. The NRL will never get these two foundation clubs out of the comp because they need them.

      The Roosters have been so successful from the time Phil Gould helped rebuild the club way back in 1995. In the following 22 seasons the Roosters have played in 15 semifinal series, played in 6 grand finals winning two (2002, 2013) along with two World Club Championships (2003,2014), runner ups on four occasions (2000, 2003, 2004, 2010}and missed the grand final by one game (preliminary finalists) on five occasions (1997,1998, 2014, 2015, 2017). That’s 11 seasons out of 22 that they have played in Preliminary finals winning 6 and losing 5.

      Penso on those stats we should be classed as the biggest chokers in the comp but the bottom line is they are a competitive side that will never be lost to Sydney. They have the greatest business and marketing staff that always has the Roosters in the black. and as shown from the statistics of their performance indicates that they are exactly what the NRL needs in the competition

      Expansion really should be Perth and Adelaide. However because of the unfairness of Brisbane only having one team in Queensland’s Capital city Adelaide unfortunately will miss out and a second Brisbane side will be added.

  7. not 20 meant 18 .1souths 2saints 3tigers 4manly 5penrith 6canberra 7parrabankstown 8cc roosters 9perth sharks 10brisbane 11cowboys 12melbourne 13titans 14ipswich 15 knights 16 2nd NZ…….17 adelaide 18barbarians(figi/PNG)

      • Makes sense,everyone has opinions and for some reason they think there team shouldnt have to merge or relocate.Why would you not merge Parra and Dogs playing out of the best stadium for league in the country ,packed house guaranteed every game,both huge leagues clubs,strong juniors and Parramatta within 10 years will be the premier business district in Australia.Penrith is to big to merge,Wests already have and Campbeltown will keep growing.The Roosters want the central coast juniors so they can relocate.The Sharks sooner or later are going to have to die or relocate so relocate them now.So if the NRL were serious and said this is how it is take it or leave it in a space of 2 years you would still have 16 teams but you would have Perth in.Central Coast in and a place for Ipswich.By 2022 you could than bring in another 2 teams to make 18. Possibly second NZ team and a combined Figi/PNG.For the good of the game the NRL need be tough but also the fans have to take a deep breath an just accept change to move forward

        • Phoenics juniors are a thing of the past. Sure large areas like Brisbane, The Warriors, Newcastle, Townsville, and maybe two or three sides in Sydney have an abundance of juniors but sides like the Roosters still produce juniors by spotting young talent and bringing the kids through their grades. Latrell Mitchell, Boyd Cordner, Dylan Napa, Joseph Manu, Frank-Paul Nuuausala, Isacc Liu, Mitch Aubusson, Victor Radley, Nat Butcher, Lindsay Collins are current Rooster NRL players who have come through the Roosters System, When they won the 2002 premiership add Heggarty, Minichiello, Bonnetti, Cusack, Ricketson, Fletcher, Lomu, Flannery and Crocker. All these players debut for the Roosters and came through their junior program.

          Being born and bred in a district and playing in local comps as kids then finally making it into first grade is almost a thing of the past for most Sydney clubs. Ask Melbourne officials how many players were born in Melbourne from their premiership winning sides over the years. I will give you a tip it looks like this 0.

  8. As Penso said, South Melbourne Swans became the Sydney Swans but also the Fitzroy Lions became the Brisbane Bears and then the Brisbane Lions, both of these clubs have gone on to become powerhouses, at one time or another, in the AFL. The AFL stopped propping clubs up financially and they went broke. These clubs could not meet the financial plans set by the league and had to move interstate or fold. It was as bitter a war as the South Sydney Rabbitohs fight when they were ousted. Norths Bears, Balmain Tigers, St George Dragons, Western Suburbs Magpies, Illawarra Steelers all of these teams were amalgamated or gone, in Norths case, after Manly squeezed them out of the ill fated Northern Eagles. The NRL started in the right direction but never finished the job. West Tigers need to be relocated full time to Campbelltown and make it their own. The AFL and Soccer are stealing their supporter base. Manly need to make the move permanently to the Central coast, as Brookvale is not and never will be a modern stadium. They are also losing juniors as the housing prices force young families out of the area. Souths and Easts should be combined as a Sydney team, eventually. Easts have the Money and Souths have the juniors. They have history but they cannot stand alone, as they are today and survive. Parra and Penrith should also combine but that is for a latter day. The NRL should no longer prop up teams financially. That money should be poured into regional areas and juniors and playing games in regional areas. It is not a city game only. The NRL still own the Titans (although it is being sold now) but they have owned the Tigers, Titans and Knights and other teams at some stage. The Broncos are the ONLY team, with the Cowboys close behind, that make a profit. They are both one football team cities. Queensland has a team in Townsville and teams in Brisbane/Gold coast. There is over 1,500 klms between these teams without a NRL presence…. in a NRL state. A central team in Rockhampton/Mackay would be of benefit to diehard fans who travel hours and hours to attend games….but although there is money from big mining companies etc it will not come to pass before Teams go to Perth, Adelaide and Ipswich. I have lived in Perth, Adelaide and Melbourne and there are strong NRL fan bases (even before the Storm) with expats living in all of these cities. Crowds during the Super League war were greater than Sydney teams in all cases . Having also lived in Penrith and Parramatta (I was in the Military and moved a lot ) I understand the supporters will not want their teams to move but if everyone was honest they would realise that they will never get more than the 8 to 10 thousand fans to a game…and that is not enough revenue. Sydney is not driver/transport/parking friendly and building 2 billion dollars worth of stadia less than 30 ks apart, in central Sydney, is not going to change the fact that no one will attend the grounds. Move the teams and start the process now. Rant ends

    • Souths to merge with the SCUM.
      I doubt it.
      I would prefer to be run over by a bus!

      Parramatta and Penrith to merge?
      Really?
      The two biggest Junior areas to combine?
      No way!

      Parramatta can swallow up Balmain North of the Parramatta River.
      The Dogs and Magpies can combine, that will reduce 1 team in Sydney.
      Dragons to play at Wollongong fulltime.
      So that is 2 clubs gone.
      The only Question is the Rorts, just get rid of them completely!

      North Sydney Juniors are bigger than Manly so Manly are moving in on Blacktown.

      • 3Fourskins that’s not what you lot said when you got ran over by a bus in 2000-2001 seasons. People like you marched in the streets to be let back into the comp. 😭

  9. The Sharks won’t be forced to relocate as they own their own land and stadium.
    Their Appartments Construction will sustain them financially
    Their Juniors is way more substantial than the Rorts, Manly, Dogs or the Tigers.

    Perth, Central Qld and Ipswich are a must for the future.
    NOT Adelaide though as they are more pro-AFL than in Melbourne.
    A South Pacific team and maybe Wellington can be an option also.

    Relocating any Sydney teams to anywhere in Queensland won’t work either.

  10. Whoa. This is so deep. I thought I knew footy, but I reckon you guys have got awesome ideas.
    NRL should recruit yous to grow the game.

  11. Seriously how can the Nrl be talking about Expansion at all !! , there are at least half a dozen teams that are struggling at the moment, one of them being a already new titans franchise, Perth would never get a consistent weekly crowd, not to mention the travel time is as long as NZ,look how they travel, its unfair for these traveling teams to compete without a major helping hand from the Nrl, get real people

    • Most of those struggling teams are Sydney based I think when they talk about expansion, relocation is also part of what they are saying. there are just to many teams in one area that makes it impossible for everyone to prosper. the two I would move is roosters and penrith or tigers which are 3 of the most dead crowds in the game to Perth and Wellington (or South Island)

      Also I would relocate Titans to Ipswich as the Gold Coast experiment has failed due to Gold Coast interest in rugby and making it a mission to get from Brisbane to titans stadium. You wouldn’t get that problem in Ipswich you would get a big bulk of south Brisbane and Logan fans it’s also not even that bad of a drive from the Gold Coast either, and hopefully they would learn from there mistakes at Gold Coast and give suitable transport outside of Ipswich.

    • The whole point of relocation is to ease the congestion of Sydney teams and allow a relocated team to benefit from an entire capital city of corporate sponsorships. Your opinion that Perth wouldn’t get a consistent crowd is absolute rubbish, considering the Reds averaged better home crowds then Sydney teams and that was 20 years ago. Your travel argument is also stupid. NQ Cowboys have to travel from Townsville to Sydney every second week and they’ve made 2 grand finals and made the finals every year since 2011, so travel doesn’t effect them, same with the Warriors. Your comment smacks of nothing but negativity

  12. the NRL should get rid of the roosters, sharks and put in 4 new teams in perth, adelaide, PNG and central QLD. another brisbane team won’t work.

  13. Everyone has opinions and for some reason they think there team shouldnt have to merge or relocate.Why would you not merge Parra and Dogs playing out of the best stadium for league in the country ,packed house guaranteed every game,both huge leagues clubs,strong juniors and Parramatta within 10 years will be the premier business district in Australia.Penrith is to big to merge,Wests already have and Campbeltown will keep growing.The Roosters want the central coast juniors so they can relocate.The Sharks sooner or later are going to have to die or relocate so relocate them now.So if the NRL were serious and said this is how it is take it or leave it in a space of 2 years you would still have 16 teams but you would have Perth in.Central Coast in and a place for Ipswich.By 2022 you could than bring in another 2 teams to make 18. Possibly second NZ team and a combined Figi/PNG.For the good of the game the NRL need be tough but also the fans have to take a deep breath an just accept change to move forward

  14. My concern with a Logan/Ipswich team is the same thing will happen with them as with the Titans. The Broncos have been the only option for NRL fans in Qld for such a long time that everyone in SE Qld is a Broncos supporter. The Titans had a chance but unless you get instant success like the Storm people are going to stick with the winning side and the Broncos have barely ever fallen out of the top 8.

    The Bronco’s “salary cap” means the usual cap boost that new clubs get to be competitive out the gate is negated for any team hoping to compete against them.

    I’d rather see a Pacific team based out of Cairns first with some home games played each year in PNG, Fiji, Tonga and Samoa. A good portion of the NRL is made up of talent from those areas.

    All new teams should have to have rectangle ovals as well, round ovals are a crime against humanity.

    • Paulo, living in Brisbane for the last 11 years it has become apparent to me that half the population idolise the broncos and the other half despise them
      A second Brisbane team (Logan or Ipswich, preferably Ipwitch) would pick up those disaffected Brisbanites. The population growth in the Western corridor is unbelievable, greater than or on par with growth in SW or NW Sydney, and unlike those locations, a lot of the population are from leagues demographic (i.e. working class Anglo/Islander).
      You will also find that the disaffect supporters still support Wynnum Manly, Ipswich Jets, Logan South, Brisbane Easts, Redcliffe etc so will be happy to support a new team.
      That opportunity cannot be missed.
      Aslo, I would suggest cutting Manly and Roosters to make way for the expansion – not too many would be overly concerned about that outcome 🙂

      • I really think withing 10yrs Ipswich would be the bigger franchise in Brisbane.As you pointed out the ppl in that corridor are very similar to those of western sydney

        • ParraMatt, with your line of thinking when according to you they merge Parra and Canterbury into Parra-bankstown. In the future expansions you will be calling for Ipswich to merge with Brisbane so they can have a team in Adelaide.

      • Billy, The headline reads: NRL Expansion – It’s time to grow the game
        There is nothing in the story about cutting, moving or merging. The teams already in the competition are safe and the NRL want to expand it. Perth, 2nd Brisbane team and Adelaide are screaming out for Rugby League. Its time to expand not cut you drongo! Typical Queenslander. When they where handing out brains on creation day you lot reached for the banana box instead.

        • sorry precious, did I upset you with my light hearted dig???
          if you had been around long enough, you would know I am not a queenslander, just someone who lives there, so enough of your BS and back in your box – insults and churlish behaviour is normally reserved for pea brains and you have confirmed your pea brain.

        • Billy 🤣 don’t make me laugh any harder or I will fall off my seat. So you went and became a Queenslander of your own doing.😃 and it still unsettled you enough to stick up for all Queenslanders 🤣🤣🤣. If I insulted you with my light hearted humor then perhaps this will make you feel a little better. Typical wanna be Queenslander who when they were handing brains out on creation day you must of missed the banana box for brains and picked up a pineapple ✔

  15. Manly should go after what they did to Norths. They have only a few supporters now and no decent stadium or transport, no juniors of their own and they cheat as well so.. they get my vote.

  16. Cronulla is financially stronger than most clubs these days. They have a plan and should remain. I reckon Roosters and Rabbitohs should merge. Also 1 western Sydney team should go. Most likely the Tigers. It’s a basket case and is reliant on NRL financial aid. The Bulldogs don’t have a proper stadium. No atmosphere. Fans hate the ground so avoid it.

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