Further details of Matt Lodge’s exit from the Broncos have emerged as the front rower braces to face his former side when Brisbane battle the Roosters on Thursday night.
The Broncos agreed to pay up to $1 million of Lodge’s salary to facilitate his departure from Red Hill, a move that came under intense scrutiny at the time.
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“You try not to be critical of Brisbane as a former player but I don’t think we can believe anything that’s coming out of that place at the moment,” Brent Tate said on ‘NRL Tonight’ in the wake of Lodge’s exit to the Warriors.
“Kevvie came out and said they’d stay and if Matt Lodge goes, honestly, I think clubs are built on trust and at the moment there doesn’t seem to be that at that club.
“There’s different messages coming from all different people within the ranks and I hope for Matt Lodge’s sake he gets to go to a club because he’s been so up in the air and I know how difficult that would be for a player who plays on passion and emotion.”
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Now though, a report from News Corp has revealed more details on Lodge’s exit while chairman Karl Morris also explained why Brisbane was willing to chip in to speed the process up.
“Matt Lodge was a redemption story and it was great to have him back,” Morris told News Corp.
“He did all the tough work he had to do while playing for Redcliffe to get back into the NRL. He completely gave up the drink and was a model citizen while he was with us.
“For whatever reason, culturally, it didn’t work with him and the new coaching staff and we decided to part ways.
“Kevvie wants a certain type of player and person at the Broncos and he just didn’t suit the type of team Kevvie was trying to build.”
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The News Corp report claims that Lodge’s character was not the best match for what Walters was trying to build at Red Hill, with suggestions he cut corners at training.
Lodge is also said to have been sprayed by one Broncos official for his attire around the club.
But speaking to News Corp ahead of Thursday’s game, lock forward Pat Carrigan was full of praise for his former teammate.
“Lodgey always plays well and I’m sure he will step up against us, I’m excited for him,” he said.
“He’s a halfback in a front-rower’s body, he’s actually a very smart footballer and he taught me a lot about the game.
“I am grateful for a lot of the stuff Lodgey did for us younger blokes here. He gave us that introduction to first grade. We had some good battles on the training ground so he will be up for this one and we will be too.”