Manly have confirmed their interest in troubled South Sydney NRL star Dylan Walker, amid speculation the former Test centre is facing the sack from the Rabbitohs.
Walker’s future at Redfern appears bleak after he and teammate Aaron Gray overdosed on painkillers and were hospitalised in September.
The 21-year-old’s fate will be decided at a Souths board meeting later this month when it is expected he will be axed, however chief executive John Lee has said his fate has not been sealed.
Walker has been linked to a number of clubs including St George Illawarra, Canterbury and Penrith but the strongest speculation is he is headed to Manly.
“We’d be interested if a deal can be worked out,” Manly chairman Scott Penn told AAP.
“But it’s really up to (incoming coach Trent Barrett) and our recruitment committee.”
It has been reported that Walker has already agreed to join the Sea Eagles in 2017 and an early shift to the northern beaches would appear a natural move should he be moved on by Souths.
Barrett is in search for a five-eighth, following Kieran Foran’s switch to Parramatta.
Walker filled at No.6 in the first three games of the Rabbitohs’ 2014 campaign as well as playing there as a junior.
His departure would also ease salary-cap pressure following Sam Burgess’ move back to Redfern for next season.
Last week, Lee said the club could not guarantee Walker would stay at the club in light of Burgess’ return on a three-year deal.
“Like 15 other clubs in the NRL, it is important with your roster that you look at it day-in day-out, week-in week-out and we purposely freed up some of our cap space with Issac (Luke) going and Glenn Stewart going to Super League at the end of the year,” Lee told AAP.
“It is important with your roster that you keep it fresh and you keep if fluid.
“If ultimately that will mean there is some movement, well that is no different to how it has been the last few months. Players have come and players have gone and, in the fullness of time, that will happen with every club.”