Eels enforcer Nathan Brown has addressed speculation surrounding a rift with coach Brad Arthur, putting to bed any suggestion of ill feeling between the pair.
The 29-year-old hasn’t played for Parramatta since Round 17 but has earned a sensational recall for the grand final against the club’s cross-town rivals — the Panthers.
Brown made it very clear there was no bad-blood in the Eels camp, despite his omission from the first grade side 12 weeks ago.
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“That rumour is just a false rumour,” Brown said to the SMH.
“We’re on talking terms. All that stuff that has been said about us is rubbish. We’re all good and on talking terms. We both know we have a job to do come this Sunday. I hear some things being said, but I try not to listen to all that media talk.
“In the back of your mind, you’re worried that other people might believe the rumours. I don’t think they did though, to be honest. Everyone knows I wouldn’t be like that. They know that I will do what’s best for the team and the club.”
The Eels reportedly informed Brown he was free to negotiate with rival clubs, but was given good news after Parramatta’s preliminary finals victory.
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Arthur tapped Brown on the shoulder and said he was being considered for the grand final, before being informed on Sunday he would play.
The grand final could be his last game for the Eels, and the Wests Tigers are reportedly keen on bringing him back to Leichhardt.
Brown’s current contract is reportedly worth around $500,000 per-season and Parramatta powerbrokers are reportedly willing to contribute to his salary should he find a club.
Brown still insists the club “feels like home” and his passion to break a 36-year premiership drought hasn’t diminished.
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“It’s probably the most difficult period throughout my career so far, it has been difficult, I’m not going to lie,” Brown said.
“Throughout this whole process I was just saying to myself that I can only control what I can control, and that’s turning up to training everyday with a professional attitude and train hard. All the other stuff I can’t control.”
“To play in a grand final means everything to me.
“It’s a dream come true playing in a grand final and will mean everything to win one at Parramatta with this group of boys that we’ve had together for a number of years.”
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