Ryan Matterson is hunting for a new club. Picture: Albert Perez/Getty
Ryan Matterson is hunting for a new club. Picture: Albert Perez/Getty

Matterson’s manager slams ‘money hunt’ claims

RYAN Matterson's manager Gavin Orr has hit back at suggestions he has led the Wests Tigers back-rower on a money hunt, revealing the rising forward approached him for a release because he wasn't happy at the club.

Matterson has copped heavy criticism for requesting to leave the Tigers with two years remaining on his contract to earn more money at a rival team.

Orr, though, said the Blues Origin hopeful felt that the Tigers weren't the club for him long-term.

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Matterson agreed to join the Tigers from the Sydney Roosters in September, 2018 when Ivan Cleary was coach.

This changed just a month later when Cleary confirmed the worst kept secret in rugby league - a five-year deal to coach the Panthers.

It's understood Matterson became frustrated at the Tigers under coach Michael Maguire.

"It (the release) had nothing to do with money," Orr said.

"It was Ryan's decision and he asked the club for permission to negotiate.

"He wanted to have a meeting with the coach, he then rang his management and asked if we could look around.

Farah was critical of Matterson. Picture: Mark Kolbe/Getty
Farah was critical of Matterson. Picture: Mark Kolbe/Getty

"The Tigers said no originally and then they changed their mind.

"Now it is where it currently is.

"It is the same with Esan Marsters at the Tigers. He had a year to go on his contract and he was given permission to negotiate.

"He was then released and went to the Cowboys, so it is no different to Ryan's situation.

"It just hasn't worked out at the Tigers."

Orr also laughed off suggestions he had encouraged Matterson to leave the Tigers to earn more money.

The former Rooster could earn up to $350,000 at the Tigers next season but there is potential for more money at another club given his rise to NSW Origin 18th man status last season.

But Orr insists Matterson's potential move away from the Tigers is more about his happiness.

"As long as Ryan and I know what is going on, then it is all good," Orr said.

"It is my job - there has to be a villain somewhere in the story."

Tigers officials want financial compensation to release Matterson from the final two years of his deal.

Orr confirmed a player swap involving interested club like St George Illawarra and the Gold Coast were also on the table.

"Now it is up to us to go and talk to a club that is interested," he said.

"We've met with a few clubs and from there will be make a decision.

"Ryan has a couple more meetings with coaches.

"Paul McGregor at the Dragons is away and we're just waiting for him to get back.

"Shane Richardson is also away at Souths but we've got until November 1 to get it all sorted."