Paul Gallen has unleashed a stunning attack on Valentine Holmes, going as far as suggesting the speedster should be banned from returning to the NRL.
The Sharks skipper has never been shy in publicly calling out teammates and rivals players, especially since he’s made a name for himself in the media, but this is surely his most aggressive swipe ever.
In a stunning interview on Channel Nine, Gallen was clearly furious that Holmes was backing out on his Cronulla deal with one year remaining.
“It’s been a dream of his which is great,” Gallen said.
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“I push guys to pursue their dreams without a doubt, but the fact is he had one year left on his contract and we don’t get this far in this game or any game without your teammates.
“And Val’s left us, he’s walked out on us, which I find disappointing.
“I’ve told him that, I’ve got nothing against him personally obviously I thanked him for everything he’s done at our club, he’s won a premiership with us, he’s been our best player but the way this has happened I’m disappointed in him.”
Not stopping there, Gallen went as far as suggesting Holmes should be banned from returning to the NRL.
“The NRL have to step in here and do something about this, the guys that have the ability to go to the NFL are the marquee players, they’re the best players, they’re the players our kids aspire to be, and he’s just broken a contract,” Gallen said.
“Not only does he have a Sharks contract, he has an NRL contract.
“Now the NRL is always on about the integrity of the game, I don’t see how this is good for the integrity of the game — breaking a contract with one year to go, just walking out on a club and the game.
“Look, I think it’s got to be a minimum two years out of the game and if not out forever.
“If you’re off-contract go for your life, you’re not letting anyone down… He’s let the playing group down, he’s let the club down, and he’s left us in a big hole.”
Other Sharks teammates weren’t so critical, with Wade Graham wishing Holmes all the best, and Chad Townsend declaring he has “no doubt” his former teammate will thrive overseas.
While I am sad to see my brother @val_holmes1 leave our great club, I wish him nothing but the best as he pursues a career in the NFL. You watch, I have no doubt he will make it!
— Chad Townsend (@chadtownsend10) November 20, 2018