Manly Sea Eagles make eye-opening call on unpopular NRL move ahead of Magic Round

Manly's decision brings an end to ten years of annoyance for many fans.

Finally Manly fans, some good news. Dealing with two losses on the trot and yet another Tom Trbojevic hamstring injury, Sea Eagles fans can rejoice in the news one of their greatest pinch points is about to end. The last time Brisbane played Manly in an NRL game at Brookvale Oval, Geoff Toovey was the Sea Eagles coach, Jamie Lyon was captain and Brett Stewart scored his customary try.

If it seems a long time ago, that's because it is. The Broncos have not visited the northern beaches since 2014 after a deal Manly bosses made to switch the next eight years' "home" games against Brisbane to Suncorp Stadium. And while the move may made financial sense at the time, the arrangement has caused plenty of pain for Sea Eagles fans.

Pictured left to right after Manly players Tom Trbojevic and Daly Cherry-Evans playing against Brisbane.
Manly's long-term deal to play 'home' games against Brisbane at Suncorp Stadium will come to an end after the NRL's Magic Round. Pic: Getty

Heading into another "home" game against the Broncos at Suncorp Stadium on Friday night, Manly's win-loss record since giving up hosting rights to Brisbane stands at 2-5. But the torture is nearly over. The Magic Round clash will be the last time Manly gives up a home game to Brisbane as time is called on the long-standing arrangement.


"The decision to move this particular home game to Brisbane made good financial sense and helped the club navigate some tough times," CEO Tony Mestrov told Yahoo Sport Australia. "No one at Manly would willingly give up playing at Brookvale but it was a smart commercial decision for the time.

"We're now in a better position to dictate our own future and playing a home game at Suncorp Stadium is not part of that. While the deal afforded the club some financial benefits, it's obviously a huge disadvantage playing a strong club like the Broncos on home turf instead of 4 Pines Park.

Seen here, Manly playing against the Broncos at Suncorp Stadium in the NRL.
Manly have played their home games against the Broncos at Suncorp Stadium as part of a long-term commercial agreement between the NRL clubs. Pic: Getty

"The next time we play Brisbane at home, it will be at 4 Pines Park." Mestrov said strong home ground support this season – the Sea Eagles have attracted several 15,000-plus crowds – underlined fans' commitment to Brookvale.

"Our fans have been absolutely outstanding, turning out in big numbers and getting right behind the team at home," he said. "We will have a re-set as far as what our home fixture list will look like in the future and we'll look to give the team every advantage while also staying mindful of the club's commercial situation."