Sport NRL 2020: James Roberts forced out of Redfern by South Sydney officials, report

22:27  21 october  2020
22:27  21 october  2020 Source:   sportingnews.com

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South Sydney speedster James Roberts is reportedly on the hunt for his fifth NRL club, with the former NSW Blues centre unwanted at Redfern next season.

Roberts is contracted to the Bunnies until the end of 2021 after joining Wayne Bennett’s side midway through the 2019 season following a falling out with former Brisbane Broncos coach Anthony Seibold.

The 27-year-old has played 18 games for the Bunnies, including six this campaign before suffering a season-ending pectoral injury in Round 10.

There were rumours earlier this month that Roberts has become surplus to requirements at South Sydney.

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And as first reported by the Sydney Morning Herald, ‘Jimmy The Jet’ has already begun exploring his options with rival clubs for next season.

The Newcastle Knights, Parramatta Eels and Canterbury Bulldogs have all been linked with Roberts.

The Rabbitohs have an embarrassment of riches in the outside backs with Latrell Mitchell, Alex Johnston, Dane Gagai, Campbell Graham, Braidon Burns, Corey Allan, Jaxson Paulo and Steven Marsters all on their books.

Re-signing Mitchell, who comes off contract at the end of 2021, to a long-term deal is the club’s top priority.

Teenage prodigy Joseph Suaalii is also signed for next season, but the 17-year-old is no certainty to remain at Redfern, or in rugby league, in 2021.

Roberts made his NRL debut for the Rabbitohs in 2011 but was forced out of the club due to off-field issues.

His next two stops at Penrith and Gold Coast were also ended badly before he linked with Bennett’s Broncos in 2016.

Roberts played his best football in Brisbane under Bennett and made his Origin debut for the Blues in 2018, playing all three games.

Things went downhill quickly when Seibold replaced Bennett, forcing Roberts back to Redfern in 2019.

He checked into a rehabilitation facility for the third time in his career in May before injury cut his 2020 season short in July.

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