James Macsmith, AAP
Frank-Paul Nu'uausala, a key figure in Todd Carney's sacking from the Sydney Roosters, believes the disgraced star should have learnt his lesson about off-field behaviour when he was axed by his second NRL club.
Carney was shown the door by the Roosters at the end of the 2011 after breaking an alcohol ban and a series of previous indiscretions. That axing followed Carney's departure from Canberra in mid-2008.
The former NSW pivot's NRL career now appears in tatters after he was dumped by his third NRL outfit, Cronulla, on Sunday after an unsavoury photo of him at a urinal appeared on social media.
Alongside Carney and Nate Myles, Nu'uausala broke a club-imposed drinking ban at the end of a forgettable season for the Roosters.
Myles was released by the club soon after to join the Gold Coast, but Nu'uausala stayed and played his role in the Roosters side that won the 2013 premiership.
The hard-running Kiwi international says he took it upon himself to stay out of trouble after his night out with Carney and Myles, and believes the former Dally M medallist should have taken a similar route.
"It is a hard time for him and his family. It's crap how it got out but you have to trust the people around you and you have to know who to trust, even if they are your mates," Nu'uausala said on Wednesday.
"But you brought the game into the media with a bad image, so he has to pay the price.
"He is a strong person and the last incidents here he came back from."
Nu'uausala said he felt for his friend Carney, but NRL players now understood the rules regarding off-field dramas.
"It's pretty hard. He has had three strikes. I'm not saying it's his fault but if you get three strikes, how many chances do they give you?" he said.
"There are certain rules there and even though we don't like the spotlight, we are role models to the kids out there.
"For me, I just didn't want to embarrass my family, like last time with Toddy and Nate.
"The pressure and bad attention it brought the club and my family I just don't want to be in a situation like that again."