Lodge seals $100k NRL return as desperate Roosters make move after shock release

The Roosters have reportedly signed former Warriors prop Matt Lodge following his exit from the New Zealand club in May.

According to The Daily Telegraph, the 27-year-old will receive around $100,000 for the final six to eight weeks of the 2022 season.

The Tricolours are hoping the signing will add some much-needed firepower into their middle forwards after an underwhelming first half of the 2022 season.

Lodge played the first eight games of the year for the New Zealand side but has since returned to live in Sydney’s Northern Beaches.

The Eels were reportedly interested in acquiring Lodge’s services but were hesitant due to the NRL’s ruling of his notational salary cap value of around $20,000-per-game.

Following the departure of Ronald Volkman and Freddy Lussick, the Roosters are said to have the cap space available to take on Lodge following his controversial Warriors exit.

Trent Robinson’s side has struggled in the middle of the park, with enforcer Jared Waerea-Hargreaves out with a hamstring injury while Victor Radley is set to return in Round 16 following an ankle injury.

Meanwhile, the Roosters will line up against the Panthers on Friday night, which could be Lodge’s first appearance at his temporary home.

As it stands, the deal is only for the remainder of the 2022 season and Lodge expressed his desire to return to the NRL as soon as possible only weeks after his Warriors exit.

“I don’t want to play park footy,” Lodge said.

“I’ll keep myself as fit as I can and I’ll be ready if there is an opportunity at any of the clubs.”

Only days after his Warriors release, Lodge was spotted playing suburban rugby union in Brisbane, plying his trade for North’s Brisbane second grade team in a 27-14 loss to Bond.


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