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Souths looking to sign Luke Thompson

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It wouldn't surprise me if this was true. Thompson's put himself in the shop window with his form.

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Millions long for immortality who don't know what to do with themselves on a rainy Sunday afternoon. (Susan Ertz)

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Every quality RL player from England will soon be playing in Australia (if that isn't already the case). It does give those players a higher standard of competition to improve in but lowers the quality of SL. A few made no difference but the way it is going, it will have an effect. You can't blame the players but unless RL in the UK can increase its revenue stream to a much higher level, it will only continue. It also makes it impossible to entice top Aussie players over here, bar a few marque ones. 

If clubs offshore could have their own revenue source, or instead add to the value of an impending SL media deal well....just maybe SL could start to compete again.

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It gives younger players a chance who wouldn't necessarily get one if there have the likes of Thompson in there way, far too many times kids go out on loan and you don't hear much of them after that. I'm a believer in your environment as a player, so for instance to go from a Saint helens to Oldham (no disrespect) then it's like going back to an amateur club

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The more English players in the NRL the better it will be for our International side. What are we upto now 10 or 11 with Watkins?

I expect that number to continue to rise, Super League can’t compete financially with the NRL and I know which competition and country I’d rather be in.

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It will probably mean England start to win a few against OZ . Look what having alot of players in the NRL has done for the Kiwis. 

Hopefully we can get some backs out there though as can't win a game with 13 forwards! 

SL has many second row, and props who would be solid in The NRL and a few who would be star turns too. 

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1 hour ago, Sir Kevin Sinfield said:

The more English players in the NRL the better it will be for our International side. What are we upto now 10 or 11 with Watkins?

I expect that number to continue to rise, Super League can’t compete financially with the NRL and I know which competition and country I’d rather be in.

So aslong as the national team is OK, forget the bread n butter of Super League. What a stupid comment

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The problem is that whilst this Luke Thompson goes to a better standard of competition, the next Luke Thompson comes in to a worse one. How is the next Luke Thompson ever going to reach the level of this one when he comes in to a poorer standard competition. 

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9 minutes ago, Hullfan said:

So aslong as the national team is OK, forget the bread n butter of Super League. What a stupid comment

What do you disagree with? It would be great if Super League got a £1 billion tv deal, but it’s not going to happen. Super League is never going to be able to compete with the NRL for The worlds best players again, the sooner you accept that the better. 

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All these players in the NRL will give England a massive chance at the 2021 World Cup.

Edited by rlno1
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4 minutes ago, Sir Kevin Sinfield said:

What do you disagree with? It would be great if Super League got a £1 billion tv deal, but it’s not going to happen. Super League is never going to be able to compete with the NRL for The worlds best players again, the sooner you accept that the better. 

Have a look at the kind of salaries on offer to top players in the NRL e.g. as shown in this article.

https://www.smh.com.au/sport/nrl/bulldogs-preparing-5m-five-year-offer-for-latrell-mitchell-20190618-p51yz1.html

There is simply no way that superleague can compete with those kind of salaries, at least not any time within the career of current players. Reality is that anyone good enough to play for England is going to have make a decision about whether to take the money. 

Edited by JonM
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26 minutes ago, Hullfan said:

So aslong as the national team is OK, forget the bread n butter of Super League. What a stupid comment

I think we have to be pragmatic on these things.  Of course we would all love Super League to be as strong as the NRL and allow our teams to compete on a financial level playing field with the NRL clubs.  But ultimately the shift of financial power to the NRL seems difficult to reverse in at least the medium term.  I would offer the following points.

  • If we are to lose elite players to a rival competition, it is much much better to lose them to the NRL than a rival code
     
  • Having English players in the NRL will improve our national team.  Not all of them need to come from the NRL and I think there is a danger of some players being picked just because they are in the NRL but ultimately it is a stronger competition and our players playing and winning in the NRL will erase the mental superiority that the Australians have had for decades
     
  • I would suggest that England winning the World Cup in 2021 would do more for the sport in this country than having all the NRL based players back in Super League for the next 5 years.  Current fans would love to see the likes of Burgess and Bateman playing for their teams but an England World Cup win will reach far more people
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2 minutes ago, Dunbar said:

I think we have to be pragmatic on these things.  Of course we would all love Super League to be as strong as the NRL and allow our teams to compete on a financial level playing field with the NRL clubs.  But ultimately the shift of financial power to the NRL seems difficult to reverse in at least the medium term.  I would offer the following points.

  • If we are to lose elite players to a rival competition, it is much much better to lose them to the NRL than a rival code
     
  • Having English players in the NRL will improve our national team.  Not all of them need to come from the NRL and I think there is a danger of some players being picked just because they are in the NRL but ultimately it is a stronger competition and our players playing and winning in the NRL will erase the mental superiority that the Australians have had for decades
     
  • I would suggest that England winning the World Cup in 2021 would do more for the sport in this country than having all the NRL based players back in Super League for the next 5 years.  Current fans would love to see the likes of Burgess and Bateman playing for their teams but an England World Cup win will reach far more people

Your problem is, if we win the WC in 2021, how do we capitalise on that when the heroes people expect to see, your Burgii, Bateman, Whitehead, Watkins et al, are still playing in Australia in 2022. 

 

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2 hours ago, rlno1 said:

All these players in the NRL will give England a massive chance at the 2021 World Cup.

It might, but it also raises a conflict of interest in WB being the GB coach as well.  

I doubt he is coming with that agenda as Agents will do all the ground work anyway.

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Theres a few challenges here for the game in the UK. One of which is keeping the best players in SL. Which will be a struggle until the game in the UK is seen as a competition to truly rival the NRL (competitvely/quality/financially), which will be incredibly difficult to achieve without a drastic shift of the current situation the game finds itself in. As has been mentioned by Dunbar.

The International side will of course benefit from having more players playing in the NRL, but in reality, outside of a WC or another major tournament, how often will fans in England get to see these players play in an England shirt?.. aside form on TV. Does that matter? I think it does.

I wonder if the more England players there are in the NRL the tougher it could be to get those players over here to play (traditional NRL club pressure / NRL players union) outside of an end of season tournament. Which would be a challenge for the RFL , not SL.

Check our fixtures - https://www.rugby-league.com/england/fixtures

As we don't really play Internationals in-season it isn't so much of a problem, though that in itself is, for me, quite clearly is a problem.


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2 hours ago, JonM said:

Have a look at the kind of salaries on offer to top players in the NRL e.g. as shown in this article.

https://www.smh.com.au/sport/nrl/bulldogs-preparing-5m-five-year-offer-for-latrell-mitchell-20190618-p51yz1.html

There is simply no way that superleague can compete with those kind of salaries, at least not any time within the career of current players. Reality is that anyone good enough to play for England is going to have make a decision about whether to take the money. 

SL will become a pension plan for ageing Aussie superstars

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Let's not get hysterical about the player drain to the NRL and its impact on the quality in the UK game/Super League.

Break down English players in the players:

George Burgess and Gareth Widdop have never played a first team game of Rugby League for a UK team.

Tom Burgess played out one season at Bradford before he left to join his brothers.

Ryan Hall (31 years old) and Kallum Watkins are hardly spring chickens and if they were coming in the other direction (certainly Hall) then we would say they were coming here to top up their pensions.

This leaves six players that I can see who left the Super League to ply their trade in the NRL at the height of their careers and are still there... Sam Burgess, James Graham, Elliott Whitehead, John Bateman, Josh Hodgson and Ryan Sutton.

The likes of Joe Burgess, Sam Tomkins, Dan Sarginson and Joe Greenwood are now back in our league.

It's hardly panic stations.

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Watkins is 28. 

Taking the best 11 players out of the league is going to damage it. 

What has damaged it similarly is the quality of players coming the other way has dropped even more precipitously. 

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It's questionable if we should not revert to a Autumn to Spring season with a "winter" break that might fit in a Southern Hemisphere  tour. This might ease the knee injuries we seem to get on hard grounds.  Might it suit Toronto etc though?

The point being that, outside of tours, star players might be encourage to guest for half a season to top up inome.  Just a thought...

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28 minutes ago, scotchy1 said:

Watkins is 28. 

Taking the best 11 players out of the league is going to damage it. 

What has damaged it similarly is the quality of players coming the other way has dropped even more precipitously. 

Who are these best 11 players you mention?

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13 minutes ago, scotchy1 said:

Watkins is 28. 

Taking the best 11 players out of the league is going to damage it. 

What has damaged it similarly is the quality of players coming the other way has dropped even more precipitously. 

If Watkins (As he has played since coming back from injury) staying in SL was so critical to Leeds they wouldn’t have let him go.  Not in their interests given the state of their position in the league.  That, imo, was just hard nosed business.  Hall was the same.  Prime assets and cashing in.

The best players leaving will surely leave voids in relevant teams, but if our academies are producing what they should be, not what the RFL audits are saying, then those voids will be filled.  

Not sure what evidence the last para is based on or the 11 players. Merrin was judged to be SoO standard.  Good players such as Taia, Paea, Austin, Moa, Fonua have come to SL and have done the business (ignoring dog shots from Moa).  Hull have found gems in Talanoa and Fairamo.  

 

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1 hour ago, Dunbar said:

Who are these best 11 players you mention?

The 11 you just mentioned (bar Widdop)

People might want to debate whether they are the best or not, that seems a matter of opinion to me, but largely they would be at the very least amongst the best in SL> 

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1 minute ago, scotchy1 said:

The 11 you just mentioned (bar Widdop)

People might want to debate whether they are the best or not, that seems a matter of opinion to me, but largely they would be at the very least amongst the best in SL> 

That is my point though... players like Widdop and George Burgess have not played a single first team game over here so we have not taken the best 11 players out of our competition because some of them were never in it in the first place.

Tom Burgess has developed into a world class prop but he wasn't when he left.

Watkins and Hall are both very good players but they have each contributed a decade to the game in this country.

Which boils me down to my point... six players are playing in the NRL who left when they could have contributed much more to the UK game... it equates to one player for every two Super League teams, hardly a flood of talent draining away.

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