Channel 9 has reported that Josh Dugan has instructed his manager to start shopping him around, including to French Rugby Union clubs, after reportedly being unhappy at the latest offer put forward to him to extend his stay at the St George/Illawarra Dragons.
At 26 years of age and with a wealth of representative experience, Dugan would be a handy addition to most clubs. He can have issues with staying on the field however, bordering on the better side of being injury prone, and his history of off field issues would worry pretty much any club that signs him.
To Dugan’s credit, he does seem to have settled down in recent years and has been one of the Dragons better performers.
I tend to think that the Dragons need a complete rebuild at this stage and Josh Dugan wouldn’t really fit into that. The Dragons would be better off looking towards cheaper young players who can grow with the rest of the club.
I also think that Dugan would be better suited himself to a team that is looking for a final strike weapon to push them over the edge. The last thing he needs is to spend the peak years of his career in a poorly performing team like the Dragons.
Dugan has talked a few times about heading over to play Rugby Union in France. If they would take Ben Barba, there is no doubt they’d be interested in Josh Dugan.
Still, I’d be surprised if he headed over. With the salary cap rising, his age and his experience, I’d expect that he would move on to another NRL club rather than head overseas.