DOGS’ PLAY FOR JOEY
The Canterbury Bulldogs are trying to sign blockbusting centre Joey Leilua, who surprisingly has been given permission by the Canberra Raiders to talk to other clubs.
Leilua is under contract until the end of next season in the national capital but will be released early if he can reach an agreement with the Bulldogs or any other NRL club.
His agent approached the Raiders recently to discuss a possible contract extension.
Instead, the 27-year-old Samoan international was told the club cannot afford his $600,000 salary long term because of cap pressure.
He is also seen as a liability because of his ill-discipline.
The heavyweight centre recently copped a two-week suspension and gave away an eight-point try for kneeing Manly opponent Reuben Garrick.
Still, on his day there are few other centres in the game with as much to offer in attack.
He bravely came back this year after breaking his neck.
Leilua would be a wonderful acquisition for the Bulldogs, who desperately need more oomph in the backline out wide.
Canterbury would be Leilua’s fourth NRL club. He started at the Roosters before stints at Newcastle and Canberra, where he has played for five years. He has played 201 NRL games. He has often been spoken about as good enough to play State of Origin for the Blues.
To fit Leilua under the cap, Canterbury would have to look at offloading a senior player.