Latrell Mitchell 'unlikely to return in 2024' in staggering new claims about NRL star

NRL great Mat Rogers has gone public with a startling new suggestion about the Rabbitohs fullback.

Mat Rogers has made startling new claims that he wouldn't be surprised if Latrell Mitchell doesn't return to the NRL for the rest of the 2024 season. The South Sydney fullback is serving a three-game suspension for elbowing Shaun Johnson in the face, and fresh questions have emerged about whether he's fully committed and willing to continue his NRL career.

Phil Gould sparked fresh fears that Mitchell will walk away from the NRL when he said this week: "Has anyone ever sat Latrell down and said 'do you really want to play this game? Are you really in love with this game? Do you love the hard work? Do you love the discipline? Do you love your teammates? Do you love the club?'

"Or is it just 'I'll do it because I'm good at it but I'll do it my own way'. Has someone actually sat him down and said 'if you had a chance to walk away, would you go?' I reckon he would. I reckon he will, I don't see that he's in love with it at all."

Latrell Mitchell.
New questions have emerged about Latrell Mitchell's future in the NRL. Image: Getty

Discussing the situation on SEN radio on Wednesday, dual international Rogers revealed his own stunning theory that Mitchell is 'unlikely to return in 2024'. The former Queensland State of Origin player said: “I’d love to sit down with him and ask him where he’s at. He just needs to focus on himself. Don’t talk to the press and get off social media.

“I know he loves playing rugby league (and) I want to see him enjoy his footy because all that crap will get out of his game. I won’t be shocked if we don’t see him play again this year."

Latrell Mitchell, pictured here at a South Sydney Rabbitohs training session this week.
Latrell Mitchell at a South Sydney Rabbitohs training session this week.

Will Latrell Mitchell be back playing NRL in 2024?

Rogers suggested Mitchell's fitness levels might drop off during his month on the sidelines, and questioned whether he's willing to keep working hard. “He will have three weeks off, his match fitness will go downhill and he will have to work hard to keep himself at a level where he can come back. I’m not sure if he’s prepared to do it," Rogers added.

“At his best, he’s the best player in the league. He’s not trying to play bad footy at the moment but I don’t know if Latrell feels that he has enough juice in the tank to give what it needs.

“If he has three weeks off, I don’t know where that leaves him. At the end of the day, the game is better with a fit and firing Latrell Mitchell.”

Latrell Mitchell assures South Sydney of commitment

But Rogers' comments seem to contradict the latest reports that Mitchell has met with Rabbitohs officials and assured them of his commitment to the club. The fullback was spotted working hard at training this week and is said to be keen on mentoring his replacement Jye Gray.


Souths have barred Mitchell from heading out to his farm in Taree during his ban, and the 26-year-old has reportedly told the club he intends to be at every training session for the duration of the suspension. Brent Read reported on NRL 360 this week: “There’s speculation that Latrell’s over footy, but one thing that came out of the meeting was that Latrell is committed to the club, committed to rugby league and committed to getting back to the Latrell Mitchell that helps the footy club be successful.

“They reached the point where even people close to Latrell is telling him that things need to change. What happened on the weekend wasn’t good enough, and it wasn’t acceptable and I think that’s a change in that camp as I don’t think we’ve heard that out of that camp before”.

Souths are also reportedly looking at bringing in Mal Meninga as an interim coach to replace Jason Demetriou for the rest of 2024. The move would seemingly be aimed at Meninga trying to get the best out of Mitchell due to the bond they share from their time together at the Kangaroos.