St George Illawarra have moved quickly to shut down talk of troubled NRL star Kieran Foran joining the club, leaving the Warriors and Canterbury as his most likely destinations in 2017.
Rumours of Foran moving to the Dragons gathered steam after coach Paul McGregor on Sunday revealed his interest in the former Parramatta star’s services for next season.
However Dragons recruitment head Ian Millward quelled the speculation on Tuesday, adamantly declaring Foran wouldn’t be wearing the Red V next year.
“Kieran won’t be a Dragon in 2017,” Millward told the club’s website.
The Dragons’ bizarre about-face means Foran’s future is likely to end up in New Zealand or Belmore, with the Bulldogs reported to have recently met with the former Kiwi international.
Foran, 26, hasn’t been sighted in the NRL game since leaving the game in July, when he was granted a release from Parramatta less than one season into a lucrative four-year deal.
He played nine games in the famous blue-and-gold before sensationally being admitted to a Brisbane rehabilitation clinic to address personal issues in April.
The Warriors were considered frontrunners to snare his signature last month, however the Bulldogs are believed to have recently met with Foran to inquire about his health.
Foran’s interest in re-uniting with former Manly coach Des Hasler will immediately raise question marks over the future of incumbent five-eighth Josh Reynolds.
He has one year remaining on his current contract, while halves partner Moses Mbye penned a deal until the end of 2020 earlier this year.
Reynolds told AAP before this year’s finals series that he isn’t bothered by talk of Foran’s possible arrival, saying he has put up with speculation over his spot for most of his career.
“Foran’s coming, (Daly) Cherry-Evans is coming, (Luke) Brooks is coming. Everyone’s been coming,” he said.
“It’s a big club. The club’s pretty wealthy and well off. When someone’s off contract, they always might be coming here. For me, it’s something I’ve got to accept and know it’s going to come.
“But I know ways to deal with that now and the best way is to get out on the field and play consistent footy.
“If I buy into all that stuff, I’m doing myself a massive disservice because I believe in myself a lot. I feel like I can be the five-eighth here for my whole career.”