NRL great Andrew Johns has defended Roosters halfback Kyle Flanagan after the Roosters were eliminated from the Finals in straight sets.
Sydney were in good position for a third consecutive NRL premiership, before losses to Penrith and Canberra ended any chance of a three-peat.
Watch the 2020 NRL Telstra Premiership Finals on a Kayo 14 day free trial with every game before the Grand Final Live & On-Demand. Or, Telstra customers get $10 off Kayo per month for 12 months. Stream instantly!
With a lot of the focus on Flanagan, who the Roosters are prepared to give up with a year to run on his contract, Johns says the critics are being too harsh on him.
On the real, the Kyle Flanagan hate is astounding. The kid hasn’t even been bad by any means. Was leading point scorer at one stage and helped his team to a top 4 spot after his first full season in the NRL. Think he’s been majorly hard done by from the RL community. Just my take
— Matty (@mattymoy__) October 13, 2020
“Go and watch Jonathan Thurston when he was 20… go and watch Cooper Cronk, he was coming off the bench playing dummy-half,” he said on Nine’s Wide World of Sports.
“It takes so long to try and master the half back position… the people who are being too tough on him don’t know what they’re talking about.”
Johns also argued that with the number of injuries that the Roosters had this season, in addition to the retirement of Cooper Cronk, the role Flanagan had was incredibly demanding.
According to reports, Canterbury are the hot favourites to secure his signature with Matthew Johns telling NRL 360 that the Bulldogs under new coach Trent Barrett would be an ideal fit.
BULLDOG BID CONFIRMED
— Telegraph Sport (@telegraph_sport) October 13, 2020
“I actually think going to a club like that where the expectation is lower would suit him,” he said.
“(Barrett) he’s done a good job with Nathan Cleary (at Penrith) this year… They’re a club on the build that’s for sure.”