Views From A Wet Auckland Wednesday Evening:
Since the 6-68 meltdown we had against Penrith in 2013, I've been "ghosting" other NRL unoffical fan forums. My original motive was that, basically, this here forum was in Total 100% I Have To Kill Every MotherF...er In The Warriors Mode that night and I wanted to see if losses made other fans just as nutbaggy as everyone else on here (except me, King of Calmness in Chaos
). Turns out they do.
Anyway, in my recent ghostings of a Manly forum, a fair number of them seem remarkably calm and cool with the idea of the Sea Eagles moving to Perth, Adelaide, wherever except NZ as the silver in their Silvertail is dwindling away at quite a rate: poor member facilities, Brookvale is a shithole, poor gym facilities etc. Helps that they hate the owners who apparantly aren't putting in any coin and the owners would probably sell the team if it left Sydney.
Basically, everybody - including everybody in all Sydney clubs - knows 9 is too many Sydney clubs to have in a 16 team comp. But, of course and I guess understandably, no-one wants to put their hand up and say "I'm bleeding money, gimme tree fiddy and I'll become the Perth Sea Eagles (as an example)." This is further complicated by the understandable reality that post the Shitty South Sydney Situation (Kenny Callender would love that) in 1999 when the NRL killed off the Rabbitohs only to have to let them back in again as of late 2001, the NRL cannot and will not instruct a team to merge or move. They basically have said they will sit and whistle merrily and watch a team die rather than put more money into struggling teams - hello, Titans and Knights as recent examples - than they have already.
My personal take - I think money-wise the NRL would be better off with relocation rather than expansion at this point in time. Relocation means a pre-existing club with most of, if not all of, it's existing players moving to Perth and continuing the good fight from there. Upside: The team might be better away from Sydney and have already NRL hardened players. Downside: No local juniors coming on for a fair while until pathways form. Expansion would mean Perth would be announced as the new team as of 2023, say. The NSWRL and/or the QRL are "politely requested" to let a Perth team join their competition/s and so when the Perth Westies start the NRL in 2023, there's a bunch of players who've played together, are local, but on the flip-side haven't played any NRL so will have their hands fill avoiding the wooden cooking utensil.
And, finally, no-one appears to have any faith in Beattie, Greenburg and co having the strategic nous to plan for expansion. See the lack of money in the coffers and the loan refusals as examples of this.