Zac Lomax detail comes to light as Mitchell Moses responds to Jason Ryles appointment at Eels

Lomax has given the strongest indication yet that he intends to be at the Eels in 2025.

Zac Lomax has calmed fears that he could backflip on his deal with Parramatta stating that he is looking forward to playing under new coach Jason Ryles next year. Ryles will take the reins at the Eels in 2025 and will be joined by the Dragons star, who signed a four-year deal with the Eels, albeit under the assumption Brad Arthur would still be the Parramatta coach.

After Lomax signed with Parramatta questions were raised about what sparked his decision to leave the Dragons, given that he is in career-best form, is enjoying his footy and is taking a significant pay cut to join the Eels. The widespread theory was that he wanted to play centre rather than wing but Shane Flanagan's decision to play him on the flank has seen an incredible form resurgence and directly resulted in him earning a Blues debut.

Pictured L-R: Jason Ryles, Zac Lomax and Mitchell Moses
Zac Lomax has given the strongest indication yet that he intends to be at the Eels in 2025 after Parramatta appointed Jason Ryles as their new coach for next season. Image: Getty

The circumstances have, however, changed a lot since Lomax struck an agreement with the Eels in April, leading many to believe he may back out of the deal and stay at the Red V. But on Monday, the 23-year-old put those rumours to bed.

“The Eels appointed him (Ryles), and they are confident in their decision. He’s got the runs on the board, he’s been in some winning systems. It’s positive signs, I’m looking forward to the Eels,” Lomax said on Monday.

“I haven’t had too much to do with Rylesy, he was part of the coaching staff when I was in the Junior Roos system. To be honest, I don’t want to talk on it too much, I’ve signed a four-year deal there. But mate for me to talk on it right now, while I’m in camp… I don’t want anything to take away the spotlight from what we are trying to achieve here at Origin.”

Lomax and Moses were spotted having a private word during Monday's Blues media session hours after getting off calls with Parramatta officials, who broke the news of Ryles’ appointment to the pair. Speaking after that chat, Moses remained tight-lipped about what was discussed but was of the belief that Lomax will without a doubt be pulling on the blue and gold in 2025.

“He’s been playing some great footy, from all the headlines that have been around him all year, he had every right to throw it in and not perform but he's been their best player,” Moses said.

“It’s a credit to him, he’s put himself in this arena. Hopefully, he can continue to do that next year for us.”


The Parramatta halfback has also thrown his support behind Ryles as he dispelled rumours that there was any disconnect between the playing group and officials over who should be in charge next season. Ryles will leave his role at the Storm at the end of the year to take up a four-year deal with the Eels.

Despite the Eels' poor form to start the season, the decision to sack Arthur after Magic Round reportedly came as a shock to the players, with Trent Barrett stepping in as interim coach. But he has done little to improve their performances.

However, Moses has sung the praise of Barrett for elevating his game since joining the club and is hoping he can work with Ryles as an assistant next season. “I don’t think it (the coaching uncertainty) has been a distraction. We haven’t been getting the results and just falling short every week,” Moses said.

NEWCASTLE, AUSTRALIA - JUNE 29: Mitchell Moses of the Eels runs with the ball during the round 17 NRL match between Newcastle Knights and Parramatta Eels at McDonald Jones Stadium, on June 29, 2024, in Newcastle, Australia. (Photo by Scott Gardiner/Getty Images)
Mitchell Moses has been one of the few shining lights for the Eels in 2024.

“It’s probably not because of uncertainty around the coach or anything. Baz has come in and done a great job. With the cards he has been dealt, he’s come in to work every day and done his best for us. We probably let him down as players. It hasn’t affected us not knowing who the coach is. Our playing group just hasn’t been up to scratch."

Moses also shut down rumours that the playing group and officials weren't on the same page. “We’ve been talking through the whole time, not about who. It’s not our decision on who to make coach," he said.

“I don’t know where this disconnect thing has come from. It’s a bit weird. There is no disconnect with the playing group. We’re not winning games so the media is going to come at us and everyone is going to have these stories and start these stories. All we can control is to win games, so that’s all we can try and do. We’re a close-knit group at Parra, there is no disconnect at all. The club has got our full support as a playing group, and they support us as well. There is no disconnect.”

with agencies