Below is an email on the Eels recruitment and retention that our CEO, Ken Edwards, sent today to all our Eels members, sponsors and corporate partners. For obvious reasons, members and partners received this important update first, but we are also publishing it online for all Eels fans.
Dear Blue and Gold army,
The clubs recruitment and retention plans for 2014 and beyond are taking shape.
Next season we welcome new recruits Corey Norman, William Hopoate, Lee Mossop and Gareth Hock. We continue to be active in the marketplace, but for obvious reasons we are not in a position to discuss with whom.
We have announced the re-signing of Jarryd Hayne, Jacob Loko, Mitchell Allgood and Ryan Morgan on extended deals.
In 2013 we have introduced 4 of our NYC Squad to First Grade - Vai Toutai, Kelepi Tanginoa, Kaysa Pritchard and Junior Paulo, plus seen the debuts of Api Pewhairangi, Peni Terepo and this Friday Brayden Wiliame.
Equally significant, though, is deciding on which players do not fit into that plan.
In Rugby League, we are judged on the field by our performance and ultimately results. In recent times the Parramatta Eels have not fared well in either category.
Our Members, Fans and Sponsors deserve and demand more than what we have achieved and today the Eels declare that enough is enough.
This morning, with the full support of the entire Eels organization, Head Coach Ricky Stuart informed the full playing squad that the services of a group of selected players will not be required beyond this season.
Some of these players are off contract at the completion of this season while the others are contracted for 2014 but have been told that they are not a part of the clubs plans moving forward and have been offered early releases.
Over a long period of time, there have been a lot of people who have lost their jobs at the Eels without the playing group ever being held accountable. As of today the playing group is being held accountable.
We will not be commenting publicly on the specifics of who the players are or why they are not a part of the clubs plans beyond 2013. We do however believe it is vitally important that you, our valued Members and Sponsors, heard this from the club first.
We believe that through a full pre-season and the opening 12 weeks of the NRL competition each player in our squad has been given every opportunity to perform at the expected level. Unfortunately not all are up to the standards that we require.
As we have said constantly, a winning team culture is not built overnight but for it to develop it is reliant on talent, belief and commitment. The club is building towards a brighter future for this football team and however tough the decisions that must be made, they are made to deliver the Club long-term sustainable success.
We strive for excellence and will not settle for anything less; Members and Sponsors who invest their hard earned each year deserve that at the very least.
In football, if you are standing still you are moving backwards fast.
- Jack Gibson
Our Members, Sponsors and Fans have suffered long enough. We truly believe today is a defining moment for this club; it's the day we drew a line in the sand. We will not be stationary in our approach on the field or off it, because success simply doesnt allow for it.
We can not guarantee instant results, there will be more tough days to come but what we can promise is that each week Ricky will send out 17 players in blue and gold that will possess a desire to win.
Thank you for your loyalty and thank you for your passion. It is what will drive this club towards greatness once again.
Ken Edwards Parramatta Eels CEO