MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JULY 27: Christian Welch of the Storm warms up during the round 19 NRL match between the Melbourne Storm and the Manly Sea Eagles at AAMI Park on July 27, 2019 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Kelly Defina/Getty Images)

Things are set to go from bad to worse for the Dolphins as they continue searching for their first signing.

The NRL's newest expansion club are already set to miss out on Brisbane Broncos' prop Patrick Carrigan, but now Queensland Origin star Christian Welch is set to join the list turning their nose up at the Dolphins.

Welch has been heavily linked with a move to Redcliffe, where he would link up with the Dolphins' new coach, Wayne Bennett.

Bennet coached Welch during the stunning 2020 State of Origin series won by the Maroons, despite being labelled from some quarters as the "worst Origin team ever to be named."

Welch has become a mainstay for the Melbourne Storm over the years however, playing 117 game for Craig Bellamy's side since his debut in 2015.

He has also played six games for Queensland, and while he has struggled with injury at times during his career, the 27-year-old Sydney-born forward is now one of the best players in the game, and was a nominee for prop in team of the year at the recent Dally M awards.

One of Melbourne's leaders, the Daily Telegraph are now reporting the best news possible for the Storm, with Welch set to sign a long-term extension in the Victorian capital which could see him round out his career as a one-club player.

While his current contract value is believed to be around $425,000, it's understood the new contract will see him remain with the Storm until the end of 2026 - a four-year extension - and worth around $600,000.

It's anticipated Welch will sign the deal with the Stom in the coming days.