The Roosters were rumoured to be chasing Munster by offloading Crichton, Luke Keary and Jared Waerea-Hargreaves, but Rothfield revealed that Crichton’s extension with the club cannot be rubber-stamped by the NRL due to a salary cap squeeze next season.
“The bottom line is I don’t think Munster will be at the Roosters because they have serious salary cap issues,” Rothfield said on NRL 360.
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“They have got Joey Manu who is not off-contract until 2024 and he’s on $800,000 a year. They have got James Tedesco on $1.1 million. Luke Keyary is on $850,000. Brandon Smith next year is on $800,000 as well.
“So I just don’t think there is room for a $1.1 or $1.2 million player.”
Rothfield believes rugby union could again be on the table for Crichton as the Roosters aim to get their salary cap in shape, before they can contemplate signing a player like Munster.
“I’ll tell you how much pressure their salary cap is under, Angus Crichton agreed to terms and the deal wasn’t signed because they cannot lodge it with the NRL because it would put them over the cap for next year,” Rothfield said .
“Ronald Volkman and Freddy Lussick have left to go to the Warriors”. Sio Siua Taukeiaho goes at the end of the year. Kevin Naiqama goes. Sam Verrills will probably go.
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“Crichton possibly might go, but they have got a deal with him and they don’t want to dud him.
“If the Wallabies came up and rugby union, I’m sure they would probably let him go.
“That talk has been around for a long time.”
Paul Kent agreed Crichton could potentially move to rugby union for a similar deal to what the Roosters offered, but explained how the Tri-colours could create cap room.
“For similar money he probably would,” Kent agreed on Crichton’s potential switch to the 15 man code.
“But the talk was they were going to move Luke Keary on.
“They can move him on because he is a quality five-eighth, who is playing in a competition where there is not enough quality five-eighths.
“I know he is on significant money, but that would actually be part of the reason why the Roosters might be willing to move him on because he takes up so much of their cap next season. He is on $1.3 million next year.”