Sydney Roosters respond after Mitchell Moses 'rumours' spark NRL frenzy

The Parramatta Eels halfback has been linked with a shock switch to the Bondi club.

Mitchell Moses, pictured here in action for Parramatta against the Roosters.
The Roosters are reportedly set to enter the Mitchell Moses sweepstakes. Image: Getty

The Roosters have responded after NRL 360 panellist Paul Kent made staggering claims that the club could make a last-minute attempt to lure Mitchell Moses away from Parramatta. Moses' future remains under a cloud amid a contract stand-off with the Eels, with the Wests Tigers previously thought to be the only other club in contention to land the star halfback.

The Eels have reportedly offered Moses $1.1 million per season to stay at Parramatta for four more years, while the Tigers are said to be willing to give him $1.5 million per season for five years. Moses made his first grade debut for the Tigers before leaving the joint venture club to join Parramatta.

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Reports emerged last month that Moses would be staying at the Eels, but Parramatta don't seem to be able to get the deal finalised. In a major twist on Tuesday night, Kent reported that the Roosters could now be in the game.

“There’s rumours going around, I have not had anyone confirm them, that the Roosters are seeing out whether (Luke) Keary is going to get through the season okay,” Kent said. "Look, it is a smart move by Moses’ management if they are going to do that, if he’s holding out just to see what pops up. He still has another year at Parramatta with an option.”

As Kent reported, Moses could opt to activate an option in his contract to stay at Parramatta for 2024 before making a decision on his long-term future. Keary has suffered a number of concussions in recent years, which could explain why the Roosters would be keen to land Moses. The State of Origin halfback is said to be close with Roosters captain James Tedesco after they played together at the Tigers early in their careers.

On Wednesday, Roosters chairman Nick Politis told the Daily Telegraph: “We’re not interested. We’re more than happy with Sam Walker as our halfback.” Roosters coach Trent Robinson also reportedly moved to discuss the situation with halves Walker and Keary to ensure them they had nothing to worry about.

Questions continue to be asked as to why Moses hasn't made his decision, but Kent believes there will be a final call before Round 10. “I tend to think it will be closer to Round 10 we will be getting a decision, because by Round 10, if you are going to go elsewhere, his preference will probably be to go sooner rather than later,” Kent said. "I would suggest, roughly as a guess… that that’s what they will be thinking.”

Mitchell Moses, pictured here during Parramatta's loss to Manly.
Mitchell Moses (centre) looks on during Parramatta's loss to Manly. (Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images) (Getty Images)

Fellow journalist Paul Crawley slammed Moses and his management for holding out so long and called on the Eels to withdraw their contract offer. “So the Eels fans just sit back and cop that, the Eels as a club sit back and cop that, you’ve put a $5 million contract on the table,” Crawley said.

“So you’re telling me he’s a $500,000 better player than Clint Gutherson? Every loss they bank up, do you take $50,000 off his contract? Parramatta have to be firm now and say ‘the contract’s not here now’.”

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With the Eels sitting at 0-3 and second-last on the ladder, Kent pointed out that the club could very easily lower their offer to Moses if he can't turn things around. The Eels face the Panthers and Roosters in the next two weeks and could very easily be 0-5.

“At what point to Parramatta go 'it’s not $1.2 million, it’s now $1.1 or it is now $950,000?'” Kent asked. “At what point do they do that when these close games they have lost… in all three they have had the opportunity to win and haven’t got over the line, and a lot of that comes down to your halfback.”

Mitchell Moses and his partner, pictured here alongside Roosters captain James Tedesco.
Mitchell Moses and his partner are said to be good friends with Roosters captain James Tedesco. Image: Getty

If Moses was to join the Roosters, it would only raise more questions as to how they can afford to fit so many star players under the salary cap. Broncos great Gorden Tallis recently said: “There’s an elephant in the room. They keep on signing players and I don’t know how. It’s a running joke but I just don’t know how.

"You can’t keep saying it’s a culture and they want to play Roosters football, it’s rugby league, it’s always been rugby league. They just want to get paid more money to play the same game.”

Fans were also quick to express their scepticism that Moses will end up at the Roosters. Some labelled it a 'joke', while others suggested it will never happen.

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