He has been the stand-out performer for the Sharks for the last few years, but now, Sharks coach Shane Flanagan has called on the team-mates of Paul Gallen to help him during games, before the star second-rower suffers player burn-out.
Whilst there is no doubt that Gallen is good at what he does, Sharks coach Shane Flanagan has concerns that his on-field quality and ability will slip, without support from his team-mates.
“I have made it clear to all of them,” Flanagan told The Daily Telegraph. “We rely heavily on a few players, Paul Gallen being the major one.
“Paul Gallen is a victim of his own enthusiasm.
“But all the work Gal does is affecting his football. Everyone must contribute offensively and defensively.
“Gal does the quantity but his quality can dip a touch because he is doing too much.
“We have to design our play so it doesn’t all revolve around Paul Gallen. We have to attack as a team and not look to Gal all the time.”
He also fears that Cronulla fans may see less of the star, if he continues to play the way he does, and without the support of team-mates, so he is hoping that Gallen can not push the tempo as much in 2011.
“He is too willing to work and, as I said, I think it is taking away from his quality a little because he is a quality attacking player,” Flanagan said.
“He gets tired because of his workload and that’s notÂ fair. We don’t want him to burn out. He is only 28. We have had many discussions about everyone contributing.”
Rugby League historian, and Fox Sports Stats Manager, Ian Collis, says that the performances of Paul Gallen week in, and week out, is far better than many other NRL stars.
“Paul Gallen’s workload over the last few years has set the benchmark that all back-rowers have been measured by,” Collis said.
“Also, what the stats don’t measure is the ferocity of his involvement.”