Ever since Kieran Foran had his contract with the Warriors registered, there has been a constant theme in the media that the Paramatta Eels have some right to be aggrieved. Foran was able to negotiate a release from the Eels mid-2016, just halfway through his first year of a four-year deal. At the time of his release, he had suffered a season-ending shoulder injury and was going through personal issues which were affecting his mental health. Media reports were that Foran was not just leaving the Eels but was walking away from the NRL. So, it is understandable that Eels fans would have questions when just 8 weeks later he signed with the Warriors.
What needs to be remembered is that the Eels also benefitted from Foran’s exit from the club. His contract with the Eels was reportedly worth 1.2 million dollars per season. Obviously not having to pay the injured Foran saved the club a lot of money. It also eased the Eels 2017 salary cap pressure and meant they didn’t have a large amount tied up in a player whose recovery from injury was uncertain.
The idea that Foran somehow manipulated his situation to get out of a contract so he could then sign a 1-year contract worth with the Warriors is ridiculous. His contract with the Warriors is worth half of what he was earning at the Eels and when you add in the lost wages for the back half of 2016 and his trip to Auckland has cost him around a million dollars. Foran’s departure from the Eels came at a large financial cost, but it gave him breathing space where he could recover without the pressure of club rehabilitation.
Foran’s exit from the Eels was clearly mutually beneficial for both player and the club. One can only hope that come round 3 the focus comes off his previous club, his next club, his phone calls and onto his performances on the field.