James Tedesco of the Tigers.
James Tedesco of the Tigers. PAUL MILLER

Tedesco: 'That stability at other clubs is tempting'

IVAN Cleary will fast-track negotiations with James Tedesco and Aaron Woods in a bid to stop them following in the footsteps of wantaway Mitchell Moses.

Just three days into his new role as Wests Tigers coach, Cleary is at the forefront of the biggest battle in the club's history, which was escalated by Moses's decision to link with the Eels next season.

While Moses's halves partner Luke Brooks has signed a new two-year Tigers deal that is currently in the 10-day cooling off period, Tedesco sensationally revealed yesterday that he would "consider" offers from the Bulldogs and Roosters.

"At this stage I've spoken to those boys and I'll be doing it again," Cleary told Triple M.

"It's really important that these players are on the bus and are really committed to what I'm sure is a bright future."

Soon after, Tedesco was open and honest when questioned about his contract situation and the firestorm engulfing Concord.

"Obviously the priority is to stay at the Tigers, but our performances lately haven't been up to scratch, from my perspective and from the team's perspective," he said on C91.3FM.

"I think clubs like the Bulldogs and Roosters, you know they're always going to be strong and they've always been run from the top very powerfully.

"The Tigers have always been down the bottom, we've always had off-field dramas, and that stuff gets quite annoying over the years when you have to put up with it.

"That stability at other clubs is tempting I guess when you think about it."

Tedesco said if Cleary could prove he has what it takes to turn the club around on and off the field, he would be more inclined to stay in the famous black and orange strip.


Mitchell Moses (centre) of the Tigers is tackled by Tariq Sims (right) of the Dragons.
Mitchell Moses (centre) of the Tigers is tackled by Tariq Sims (right) of the Dragons. PAUL MILLER

"It's not money, the money is not an issue," he said.

"Just our performances need to improve.

"I'm hoping Ivan can come in and we can generate some consistency, but it takes a bit of time."

The Tigers head to Townsville to take on North Queensland tomorrow.

While his focus is on retaining Tedesco and Woods, Cleary said he expected Moses to play out the season well, despite being denied an immediate release to join the Eels, who have reportedly offered him a $2.2 million deal over three years.

He said his attitude has "been good, no problem".

"I would have thought if he's made the decision to move on, like other players at other clubs, it's important that you finish well at the club at you're at, especially if you've been there for a while," Cleary said.

"It's pretty simple for me and the club - we want players who are committed to the club, committed to building a future here.

"If good players who want to be a part of that, and these guys want to be a part of that, all individually, then fantastic.

"But if you don't, and that's okay, sometimes in this job that we've got here, it's not always going to be smooth sailing, and that's not for everybody. So we'll see what pans out."

News Corp Australia

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