Jarryd Hayne Points A Gun To The Eels Head, But They Have Plenty Of Ammo Of Their Own

This has been coming for some time.

The Daily Telegraph in Sydney is reporting that Jarryd Hayne has his nose out of joint over comments made by his coach Daniel Anderson after the weekends loss to the Brisbane Broncos.

What Anderson said was the softest rocket you have ever seen:

“I think our fullback is learning. He wasn’t good tonight in my opinion. Not many people will say it but he was off his game. I think he would have been frustrated at some of the decisions he made.”

Hayne needed to hear it. His form this season has been very average. He earns about $500,000 a year playing for the Eels, and when you burn up that much of the salary cap you don’t have the luxury of having off weeks.

So Andersons comments I felt were needed….and it was always going to be interesting to see how Hayne responded.

“We’re just not jelling. It’s the coach’s job … it’s for him to bring us together and to work that out.” said Hayne.

He left the stadium and didn’t attend a team function after the match. Now, his manager has called the clubs CEO and asked for a meeting between the player and coach to sort the matter out.

Its a really, really bad response.

As I said, this was a soft rocket. This wasn’t a coach getting stuck into a player in a massive way. It wasn’t some legendary spray that almost say the player and coach come to blows. This was a feeler by Anderson. It was the coaches way of challenging his highest paid player.

Now, I’d be disappointed if a player didn’t get pissed off in some way. The problem is, the reaction after the game and via his manager. Instead of being pissed off, brooding for a bit and then coming out in his next game and taking it out on the opposition, Hayne has decided to challenge the coaches authority.

The theatrics of calling for a meeting, what a pathetic parade that would turn into. Keep in mind, a coach see’s his players most days of the week at training. He would talk to every player, its his job. So what the hell is an official meeting all about?

Its about ego.

Hayne is too good and too important to be open to criticism from his coach. He is too important for a quiet word or a phone call.

He needs to go through the motions of a meeting where him and his manager get into their best suits. They walk into the Leagues club in front of the media and have their ego stroked by all and sundry. he wants the coach to say “I’m sorry Jarryd, you’re our best player, I’m so sorry for what I have done. You are far more important than me and you call the shots”.

Then afterward the red headed ambulance chaser can throw a Channel 9 microphone under his nose, pretend he is his best mate, and Haynes self important circle jerk will be complete.

What a load of rubbish.

What no one is saying of course is the background to this which is that Hayne is now under pressure to prove he is worth his $500,000 a year salary. If he decided to walk out on that contract, he knows he could demand $1,500,000 a year from the AFL and they would be stupid enough to pay him that type of money.

If you were Hayne manager, would you do whats best for your player, maybe get an experienced player or coach into Haynes ear, tell him to shut up and get on with it, or would you be happy to investigate the 15% of $1,500,000 you’d get by getting Hayne to quit his contract?

This is the silent gun to the Parramatta Eels head, however, they have a plan of their own.

Its being reported that the Eels have told the management of Cooper Cronk that they would be willing to stump up big money should he be forced to leave the Melbourne Storm because of salary cap restraints.

If you had to pay $500,000 for Jarryd Hayne or Cooper Cronk….do you even hesitate to go with the latter?

I questioned last year when Hayne was signed for such a huge contract whether he was worth it. Simply based on all the great fullbacks in the game, with the new fullback positions available, and with the handful of good games Hayne had played to that point, was he worth star money?

Billy Slater is worth that money. He is brilliant in attack and defense every single week. He is dangerous with the ball in his hands, putting on great passes to put team mates into gaps, he has an alright kicking game, but most importantly, he brings an A Game every single week, without fail.

Contrast Jarryd Haynes for to that of Billy Slater, once again, its no contest.

Hayne is a young bloke with a lot of athletic talent, but he has a long way to go to be a top player in this game. He has played poorly so far in 2010, and it was long over due for him to be told that.

As Phil Gould pointed out, Hayne is a good player, but his impact on the game is solitary, he doesn’t make team mates around him any better, and that has always been the gold standard mark of how great a player really is.

So if Hayne wants a meeting, I think Parramatta should call one. A team meeting, get every player from every grade together. Make Hayne stand up in front over every single player and tell his coach how important he is, and how, by earning more than anyone else in the room, he should not be responsible for his own form.

That would go down really well.

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