League: Parramatta Eels grant Kieran Foran release from NRL contract

The man who brought Kiwis five-eighth Kieran Foran to Parramatta is now resigned to losing the troubled playmaker to a rival team. Photo / Getty Images.
The man who brought Kiwis five-eighth Kieran Foran to Parramatta is now resigned to losing the troubled playmaker to a rival team. Photo / Getty Images.

Parramatta's salary cap woes are almost over with the club agreeing to release troubled star Kieran Foran from the remainder of his NRL contract.

Friday's development comes as the Eels and the NRL are believed to be close to striking a deal to ensure the club doesn't appeal the loss of 12 competition points for salary-cap breaches.

It is understood the governing body is considering reducing the $1 million fine to try to stop the standoff heading to the Supreme Court and finally bring an end to the long-running saga.

The Eels are closer to freeing up their books, wiping off what had been left of Foran's lucrative $5 million, four-year deal.

It is unknown whether the club agreed to the $200,000 severance package reportedly requested this week by Foran's management.

The Eels announced their decision to release Foran on Friday afternoon in a short statement on the club website.

"The Parramatta Eels have today granted Kieran Foran a release from the remainder of his contract with the club. The Eels wish him well for the future," the statement read.

Earlier on Friday, Eels coach Brad Arthur was resigned to losing Foran after the New Zealand international officially requested a release earlier this month.

Arthur was considered instrumental in luring Foran from Manly over the summer in what was trumpeted as the greatest signing in Eels' history.

But his stint in blue and gold lasted just seven games before suffering a season-ending shoulder injury in round 12. He also missed time after checking into a rehabilitation clinic in April.

His release is the latest blow for Eels fans in a disastrous 2016 that has included the cap saga, the subsequent sacking of club executives and Corey Norman's sex tape and drug charges.

Asked if it would be tough to see Foran walk away, Arthur said: "Look, it's not tough.

"Kieran's got to do what's best for him, for his health. I'm supportive of that. I've got 38 other players here that I need to focus on."

Pressed on whether he'd be disappointed seeing Foran in another jumper, he said: "That's up to Kieran."

The upside: Foran's departure leaves the Eels flush with cash within their salary cap to hit the free agent market, which could include code-hopping superstar Jarryd Hayne.

The club have also yet to re-sign off-contract players Corey Norman, Isaac De Gois, Danny Wicks, Vai Toutai and Jeff Robson.

However, despite the introduction of an interim board last week, Arthur said he was still unsure when he could begin signing players for the 2017 season.

"We don't have any clarity around the cap at the moment. We can't do anything until we get that ... It's not ideal but it is what it is. We just have to move on," he said.


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