June 22, 201312:00AM
BENJI Marshall’s long-term future at the Wests Tigers may be in doubt but there was some good news for the club’s supporters yesterday - Aaron Woods has declared his desire to stay for the long haul.
Woods is off contract at the end of next season and will be one of the most coveted players in the game should he put himself on the open market.
However, the NSW front-rower told The Weekend Australian he had no plans to leave the club that gave him a shot at first grade in 2011.
“I want to stay at the club,” Woods said.
“I love the club. I have no intention of going anywhere. Hopefully they come to me and want me to stay because that’s what I want to do.”
The Tigers have some other contractual issues to sort out before then, chief among them being Marshall.
As part of a previous agreement, the club had agreed to revise the final two years of his contract to cater for increases in the salary cap.
It is understood that revised offer was sent to Marshall’s manager, Martin Tauber, yesterday and, despite speculation he could be offered an extension, none was forthcoming.
The next step will be the most interesting. If, as expected, the offer was below what Tauber desired, he could seek to take Marshall elsewhere at the end of the season.
Marshall himself was tight-lipped on his future yesterday.
“It’s why I have a manager, so I can just focus on playing. My contract negotiations have been the furthest thing from my mind at the moment,” Marshall said.
"My priority is to try and play good for the team and that’s my focus. My manager can take care of that side and I’ll just be worrying about playing.
"I’m pretty sure the club is trying to do something to renegotiate my contract. This week is a big game for us and I’ve just been focusing on that.
"After the game, I’m sure I will be able to sit down and talk about what is happening in the future but for now, it is about this game.
“I signed a deal for five years two years ago. I’d love to be here for life and if the club sees it that way I’m sure I would be.”
The contract discussions come amid criticism of Marshall’s form for his club. The New Zealand international is coming off one of his worst performances in first grade – a defeat against Brisbane which included nine missed tackles.
“You just get used to it, but it doesn’t affect the way I play,” he said of the criticism.
"If anything, it makes you want to play better. We are back at home at Campbelltown and I’m looking forward to putting in a good performance for our team.
“My form has been a bit patchy lately, a bit up and down. I’d like to be playing better. No one likes to be embarrassed in defence and your ego takes a hit a little bit. You just have to go back to the drawing board and work hard.”
I agree woods is demanding of more attention,offer Benji a small increase as per the conditions of the handshake agreement but no extension on the three remaining years that’s just stupid.
Lets face it he is 28 now not getting any younger or better by the time a new 5 year agreement finishes he will be 33 34 and on good coin, 3 years beyond this one and see what is happening is more than what is deserved on current form,otherwise we will have another player we are paying for that’s not with us.
Woods on the other hand is performing like a gun and presumably not getting paid like one he wants to stay we all want him to stay,don’t let McDonnel anywhere near it and get the job done.
Also I haven’t seen much of brooks or Moses but from what I hear they need to be tied down Benji is the past and present perhaps certainly not the future.
I don’t know whats more embarrassing, given current form, the club see a guy who will be lucky to make the NZ side at the end of the yr as a higher priority than a guy whose just made an Origin side OR the fact that Marshall has longer to run on his current contract, but his issue is more pressing.
This club :crazy
Benji’s even hogging Woodsys articles now
and you just gave more ammo to it
hope this doesn’t turn into the beau situation where mayer says “oh mate i had a contract in my top drawer and just forgot to give it to him”
good luck to woodsys, he deserves whatever he gets and i agree with Mcdougal. 10 years minimum!! :sign:
The Tigers need to show Woods and Marshall who is higher on the pecking order by giving Woods a massive extension before Marshall. Woods is off contract sooner, is playing better, is more important, offers more, is better for the young guys etc. etc. etc.
As much as think you’re right, this is the same thing people were saying about Lawry not long ago.