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REPORT: NRL to register Todd Carney as early as Monday

Sporting News logo Sporting News 16/04/2018
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He’s back … almost.

The NRL will reportedly rubber stamp rugby league bad boy Todd Carney’s contract with the North Queensland Cowboys as early as Monday.

Carney, 31, has been out of the NRL since 2014 after he was sacked by Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks over the infamous bubbler photo and de-registered by the NRL.

The former NSW and Australia five-eight had stints in the English Super League with Catalans Dragons and Salford Red Devils before signing with Northern Pride in October.

North Queensland have reportedly wanted to sign the former Dally M medal winner as back up to halves Johnathan Thurston and Michael Morgan since the off-season.

However, the NRL has so far baulked at registering Carney, who has previously been sacked by Canberra, Sydney Roosters and Cronulla.

But News Limited journalist Paul Kent is reporting NRL officials will meet with Carney in Townsville on Monday to finalise conditions for his return.

“He’ll probably be registered tomorrow,” Kent told Triple M.

“He played for (Cowboys feeder club) Northern Pride this weekend and last Tuesday he began training with the Cowboys, so they’ve now got him back at the club.

“And NRL (officials) are flying up (to Townsville) tomorrow – my understanding is to put some conditions to Todd Carney.

“It’ll be a conditional registration whereby I dare say he’ll be forbidden from drinking and I imagine there’ll be some sort of counselling process that he needs to continue to undergo.

“And that will happen so with those conditions in place the NRL will register his contract.”

Carney has played 166 NRL games for the Raiders, Roosters and Sharks in a career plagued by off-field incidents.

He would be a welcome addition to a Cowboys roster that is struggling mightily with just one win in their first six games.

Carney could make his long-awaited NRL return as soon as Saturday night when the 15th-place Cowboys host Gold Coast on Saturday night.

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