What really needs to happen is for the Roosters to get caught out. It won't happen this year but everyone believes they have been cheating the cap for the past 2 decades. Maybe Uncle Nick gives the NRL salary cap auditors brown paper bags too.
The NRL today issued a breach notice to the Manly Warringah Sea Eagles after concluding its investigation into salary cap issues at the club.
The notice concerns preliminary findings of potential breaches of the salary cap over the last five years.
Should these preliminary findings be confirmed, proposed sanctions could include a significant fine on the club.
The club could also be required to adjust its salary cap for 2018 to recognise commitments made to players that are found to be in breach of the cap.
In addition to the matters relevant to the club, show cause notices have also been issued to two current club officials, requiring them to demonstrate why their registrations should not be cancelled.
NRL CEO Todd Greenberg said the Manly club and both officials have already been provided with opportunities to assist the NRL during this investigation.
They will now be given a chance to respond formally to the preliminary findings before final determinations are made.
Mr Greenberg said that, in accordance with the NRL Rules, the parties have been given five days to respond to the breach notices but, given the seriousness of the allegations, the NRL would consider a request for an extension of time.
MORE details of Manly’s alleged salary cap breaches have come to light, with one senior rugby league journalist describing the case “as blatant as it gets”.
The NRL issued breach notices to the northern Sydney club and two of its senior officials after an investigation uncovered potential breaches of the cap over a five-year period.
The Sea Eagles later issued a statement denying at least some of the findings, and will fight the breach notice.
But NRL 360 co-host Paul Kent revealed the worrying extent of the alleged rorting.
“The NRL have uncovered evidence, allegedly, whereby Manly have been signing players for example to $150,000 and they register the contract at the NRL for $100,000,” Kent said.
“Which is as blatant as it gets when it comes to cheating.
“It’s not a lot of money. It’s significantly less money than Parramatta and it’s spread over five years.”
Parramatta was last year fined $1 million and docked 12 competition points for breaches of the salary cap, which ultimately robbed them of playing finals in 2016.
But the NRL is unlikely to dock points from the Sea Eagles in 2018.
Senior News Corp reporter Phil Rothfield explained why the two cases are viewed differently by the NRL.
“It’s identical in that it involves third party payments, and payments that at this stage allege involved Manly club officials,” Rothfield told NRL 360.
“When I say it’s identical to Parramatta, monetary wise I think it’s about 25 per cent. We’re talking up to $400,000 worth of payments to players that shouldn’t have been made with the help of Manly officials.
“What will happen from here, if found guilty ... the Sea Eagles are going to have to add $400,000 to their salary cap next year, and what that means is the hopes of signing Trent Hodkinson or Todd Carney now looking very remote.”
Even if Todd Carney can earn a contract at Manly, there will be strict clauses placed in it to avoid the fallen star lapsing into old habits.
NRL 360 co-host Paul Kent revealed Sea Eagles coach Trent Barrett plans to place a booze ban on Carney if he makes the move south to rejoin the NRL.
Carney has a lengthy rap sheet, and most of his off-field incidents have involved alcohol.
“Trent Barrett told me that if (Carney) did come to Manly it would be on the condition that he did not drink,” Kent said.
“He got sacked from the NRL three years ago, went away to show everyone he could repent in England and didn’t learn his lesson there.
“The NRL never banned Todd Carney, what they said was when a contract comes to us we will consider it.
“Every NRL club said this is the problem if we sign Todd, he’ll put us on the back pages almost immediately, but at some point we’ll be asleep in our beds, our phone will ring and we know we’ll wake up in the morning with Todd on the front pages, and you don’t know when it’s coming.”