Manly coach Geoff Toovey will consider shifting skipper Jamie Lyon to five-eighth next NRL season following Kieran Foran’s departure.
Manly playmaker Foran on Friday confirmed he had signed a $4.8 million four-year deal with Parramatta, bringing his protracted contract saga to a close.
Toovey says the huge hole partnering Daly Cherry-Evans in the halves will be filled by either promoting one of the club’s youngsters, buying an experienced player or Sea Eagles favourite Lyon moving in from the centres.
Lyon played in the halves when he first joined the Sea Eagles in 2007 and was at five-eighth in Manly’s 2008 grand final win over Melbourne.
“It leaves us a bit short; there’s lots of options there,” Toovey said.
“We’ve got some great young players coming through, very versatile players.
“That key position is a vital one and it will be difficult to fill.
“Jamie Lyon’s name has been thrown up – he was there when we won a grand final 40-0. He’s not a bad football player.”
Toovey confirmed Lyon would return from a strained hamstring on Sunday against Cronulla at Brookvale.
He said while finally having his future sorted would be a relief to Foran, it wouldn’t have an on-field effect.
“I think it will add some clarity. I don’t think it will take any pressure off him,” he said.
“Kieran is a very-focused and dedicated footballer and the pressure he puts on himself is to perform each week – it doesn’t matter where he is.”