NRL Rd 1 - Dragons v Wests Tigers
WOLLONGONG, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 15: Joey Leilua of the Tigers is pictured during the round 1 NRL match between the St George Illawarra Dragons and the Wests Tigers at WIN Stadium on March 15, 2020 in Wollongong, Australia. (Photo by Brett Hemmings/Getty Images)

Wests Tigers centre Joseph Leilua has been linked to a player-swap move with the Bulldogs that would include Dallin Watene-Zelezniak heading the other way.

As reported by Wide World of Sports' The Molethe Tigers remain keen on luring Watene-Zelezniak to Concord, with Leilua's name reportedly brought into discussions.

The Bulldogs recently confirmed the Tigers' interest in their gun fullback and are understood to be prepared to pay a percentage of his salary should they ship him to their Sydney rivals.

Leilua has had a rocky season under Michael Maguire this year and has found himself on the outer of selection on multiple occasions.

This year, reports emerged that Leilua was facing an uncertain future with the Tigers as the club weighed up decisions on the out-of-favour centre and his brother, Luciano.

Watene-Zelezniak's position at the Bulldogs has also come under question, but the Canterbury speedster recently took to social media to reinstate his loyalty to the Bulldogs after recent reports that linked him to the Tigers.

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - JUNE 16: Dallin Watene-Zelezniak of the Bulldogs is tackled by Joseph Manu of the Roosters during the round 14 NRL match between the Sydney Roosters and the Canterbury Bulldogs at the Sydney Cricket Ground on June 16, 2019 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)

“I’m signed until 2022,” Watene-Zelezniak wrote.

“We may not be winning games but I love it at the Bulldogs and the challenge that is ahead of us. The tougher the journey the better the outcome.”

While Watene-Zelezniak remains signed to the Belmore club for next season, Leilua faces a more unclear path into the new year.

The 29-year-old's contract holds a clause in the Tigers' favour for 2022, and he will need to prove his worth to Maguire in the latter half of the year if he hopes to hold his place at Concord.

Leilua joined the Wests Tigers ahead of the 2020 season after previous stints with the Roosters, Knights and Raiders.

 

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