Target: Mitchell Pearce is eyeing off a multi-million dollar offer from the Newcastle Knights. Picture: AAPNewcastle is tippedto table a multi million dollarlong-term dealforformer Sydney Roosters playmaker Mitchell Pearce in a bid to lure him to the club when his management meets with Knights officials on Wednesday.
Wests Group boss and Knights CEO Phil Gardner and the club’s head of football Darren Mooney will sit downwith Pearce’s manager Steve Gillis in Newcastle to formally kick off negotiations after Pearce met personally with coach Nathan Brown last Friday.
The Knights are vying with NRL rivals Manly and Cronulla for Pearce’s signature and with around$2 million left in their salary cap for next season, areexpected to up the antewith a $1 million-a-season multi-year offer.
It is understood the club is not expecting the NSW Origin halfback to attend the meeting.
Meanwhile, Newcastle coach Nathan Brown has dismissed rumoursPearce’s former Roosters team-mateDylan Napa is on the club’s recruitment radar for next season.
“I don’t know anything about it,”Brown said when asked about areport linking Napa to the Knights for 2018.
“We were definitely interested in him before he re-signed with the Roosters early last season.
“Wewere keen to get him up here to havea look around. But he declined the invitation and ended up committingto another couple of years down there.
“I haven’t been told anythingto suggest the Roosters are even considering releasing him from his contract.”
Brown also poured cold water on speculation linking the club to English World Cup starsAlex Walmsley and Jermaine McGillvary.
The pair have been among England’s best onthe roadto the World Cup final against and loom as dangers for the Kangaroos on Saturday night at Suncorp Stadium.
Bothhave a strong connection to Brown, who was influential on their careers when he coached them in the Super Leagueat both St Helens and Huddersfield.
Walmsley made his St Helens top grade debut under Brown in 2013 while McGillvary credits the Knights coach with playing a major role in him becoming an international winger.
But despite the close ties, Brown says neither will be in Knights colours any time soon.
“They are both outstanding players who have done really well out here in the World Cup,”Brown said.
“But Alex is at St Helens for another season and won’t be going anywhere and Jermaine has another three years left on his contract at Huddersfield so nothing is going to happen there.”