The young gun has signed with the Bulldogs for 2022 and 2023 with a player option for a potential third season in a major coup for Trent Barrett’s side.
Burton is one of the game’s most exciting young players, however would be limited for first-grade opportunities at the Panthers in 2021, prompting calls for his early release to Belmore.
The 20-year old’s agent David Riolo publicly requested a release for him earlier this month.
But speaking on SEN radio, Panthers legend and Director Greg Alexander said Burton was an important member of the side in 2021.
“We want to win a comp at Penrith this year. We came very close last year. We did sign Matt to a two-year contract and that still has a year to run. Matt will be an integral part of that team if there’s an injury,” Alexander told SEN 1170.
“Not many clubs have back-up like Matt Burton. We just can’t let him go because we can’t replace him at this late stage. [His manager] David Riolo and Matt Burton were always aware of that.”
"We just can't let him go"
— 1170 SEN Sydney (@1170sen) February 15, 2021
The Daily Telegraph reported last week that Canterbury turned down Penrith’s inital trade offer that would see Matt Burton head to Belmore and former Dylan Napa heading the other way.
Burton has played six NRL games, including five in 2020, since making his debut in 2019.