Brisbane Broncos coach Anthony Seibold has taken a thinly-veiled swipe at the Gold Coast Titans over the contract being offered to in-demand star David Fifita being made public.
The two Queensland-based sides are both involved in a major tug-of-war for the services of the 20-year-old, who is yet to officially make a commitment either way, despite reportedly offering his incumbent side a verbal agreement for 2021.
However, after Fifita reportedly backflipped on a Titans move to commit to the Broncos, Gold Coast upped the ante, offering the youngster a stunning $1.25 million per year deal, which prompted his coach to fire back at their rivals.
“I don’t think it is fair to talk about whatever is bubbling away behind the scenes with regards to money,” Seibold said.
“Most clubs have a committee. In the old days the coach ran it and had someone looking after the numbers.
“Some clubs might go rogue and make crazy offers to young players but you don’t know what every club is working towards or what they have in their cap.
“I’d hate to make comment or pass judgment on what other clubs are doing. Any player in the game that gets offered a lot of money, there is scrutiny and pressure that comes with that.”
In what may be a result of his own war of words with Seibold, former Broncos coach Wayne Bennett said he didn’t see a problem with the amount of money offered to Fifita.
“It’s the market. It’s like buying a house, isn’t it,” Bennett said.
“If someone wants to pay a ridiculous amount of money for a house you’re not going to say no to it.
“If someone wants to pay $1.25 million, they are mature people, they run their clubs, if they think that’s of value to them then that’s their problem.
“I don’t think that should be ever changed.”
News of the Titans’ mega-offer to Fifita comes after league legend Phil Gould urged him on Wednesday to not prioritise money in making the decision on his future club.
“If I was advising a young man like David Fifita, at the very least of his consideration is the money on offer,” Gould said.
“The money on offer should not make a decision for him right at his age and this stage of his career. That, for me, is paramount.”