In-form Parramatta playmaker Corey Norman is one of several high-profile past and present Eels players reported to be caught up in NRL club’s salary cap scandal.
And as speculation continues to mount around the case, the Eels are also becoming concerned at what impact it might have on the NRL’s forensic investigation.
According to Newscorp Australia, the NRL have uncovered documents suggesting Eels powerbrokers flouted the salary cap by offering players beefed up third-party payments.
It’s understood the documents were put together from June 2013 to the end of the 2013 season and include details of payments owed to Chris Sandow, Will Hopoate, Reni Maitua, Wille Tonga, Justin Hunt and Cheyse Blair.
Money owed to Norman, hooker Nathan Peats and now departed English prop Lee Mossop, who all joined for the start of the 2014 campaign was also detailed.
Under NRL rules, third-party agreements must be at arms length from the club, but the report claims documents state that in some cases the club made unregistered third-party payments.
There’s no suggestion any of the players have done anything wrong.
Former Parramatta CEO Scott Seward has been called before the integrity unit and will be interviewed next week as the embattled club face the prospect of being docked competition points.
The Eels hit back on Tuesday morning, questioning the relevance of the reports.
“The current leadership at the Parramatta Eels remain concerned at the damage ongoing media speculation is doing to the integrity of the NRL’s current salary cap investigation,” a club statement said.
“The story seems to relate to allegations of internal discussions three years ago in 2013, under the tenure of previous administration.”