Passionate NRL fan Daniel is back again with a thought-provoking article, one that looks at Trent Merrin and recent developments surrounding his future. Rejecting an offer from the Dragons that was significantly high in search of greener pastures, is he setting his monetary sights too high or is there justification for him to become one of the highest-paid forwards in the game? Daniel offers his views and more – do you agree?
D.OB. 7th of October, 1989 (25 years of age)
First Grade: 107 games
Country Origin: 3 games
NSW Origin: 10 games (1 winning series)
Notable achievements: Uglier half of Sally Fitzgibbons
Trent Merrin of the St George Illawarra Dragons announced today a rebuff to a record $1.8 million deal over three years, the highest the club has ever made to a forward.
Peter Mulholland labelled this offer as having the potential to make him one of the highest paid middle third players of the game.
The fans have spoken, thus criticising everyone including the greed of money-grabbing Merrin, Wayne Beavis, Peter Mulholland and the Dragons, as well as rival clubs.
The eagles have begun to soar with clubs rumoured regarding the purchase of Merrin including Sydney Roosters and Brisbane Broncos linked to the man.
In an era post-Jarryd Hayne, Sam Burgess and Sonny Bill Williams, a genuine lack of superstars has emerged, particularly elite players in the forward mould.
You can look no further than the Australian Four Nations team, in which the lack of youthful depth in the front row engine-room was clearly lacking.
Merrin has a number of attractive qualities to possible suitors, notably his age, representative experience and marketability.
Not to mention his late footwork, offloading capabilities and big frame which more often than not carries the Dragons over the advantage line.
It is impossible to lay blame at rival NRL clubs for actively seeking to charm Merrin onto their 2015 roster.
In 2015, the Dragons have lost local star Brett Morris, among a plethora of first graders including Gerald Beale, Jack Bird and Jack Stockwell whilst simultaneously offering Merrin the biggest contract figure ever to a forward.
Yet it isn’t good enough for Trent.
Merrin had zero issues with manager Wayne Beavis publicly denouncing the offer, alerting the rugby league world that his golden gem was on the open market.
The audacity of such a player seeking to test his market worth on an already limited market declares Merrin as the villain.
Yet this equation is simple in your trulyâ€™s eyes. The little clubs cannot compete with the NRL club behemoths.
As fans, we cannot criticise an individual for attempting to reach the best deal for himself and their family.
When a football club can offer such a lavishing record contract and for it be slapped down with a public declaration that it’s not good enough, a bigger problem hides under the surface.
How can a offer be conjured in a salary cap era that is worth leaving his home, his partner, and the club which has made him the player that he is today?
How can another club have the fruits to tempt the man away from the traditional and iconic Red V?
Don’t hate on Merrin, the St George Illawarra Dragons or even the Roosters or Broncos, hate the game.
The system that makes it near impossible for a smaller club to hold onto its crown jewels.