Manly offers Galuvao 'keys to the house'

Manly recruitment manager Noel Cleal has offered Eels forward Joe Galuvao his spare room and a set of house keys in an attempt to lure the veteran back-rower north in 2010.<br><br>Galuvao was set to sign with the Sea Eagles as early as last month but is having second thoughts about travelling from his St Marys home to the club’s training base at Narrabeen every day.<br><br>The 31-year-old is also considering early retirement after contract negotiations with current club Parramatta broke down last week, but Cleal said he would do whatever it takes to convince the former Kiwi international to play on.<br><br>“He has spoken to us about his concerns and I can fully understand where he is coming from, but there are ways to work around that,” Cleal said.<br><br>“I’ve already told him he can stay at my place whenever he needs to if that makes things easier.<br><br>“We’ve shown him around the place and he seemed happy enough so it’s still a work in progress.”<br><br>Asked if he was confident that Galuvao would sign, Cleal replied “We’re hopeful.”<br><br>Galuvao has delayed a decision on his future until after tonight’s clash with Melbourne at Parramatta Stadium but is expected to inform Manly of his plans sometime this week.<br><br>Despite Cleal’s offer, retirement looms as a genuine option for the 2003 Penrith premiership back-rower.<br><br>“Joe is weighing up whether he should take Manly’s offer or retire,” Galuvao’s manager Allan Gainey told NRL.com today.<br><br>“The travelling is the biggest problem – he wants to stay in St Marys. He has two kids and a wife and he owns his house out there.<br><br>“He doesn’t want to pay astronomical rent on a three-bedroom unit in Manly – it would probably cost him more than his contract is worth!<br><br>“He is quite happy with the scene at the club and has spoken to Des Hasler and ‘Crusher’ but even if he stays over there one or two nights a week that means he is away from his family.”<br><br>Galuvao is still hopeful that Parramatta will weigh in with a late offer but such a scenario is looking increasingly unlikely.<br><br>The Eels are secretly trying to offload some players already contracted for next season but a lack of interest from rival clubs is likely to prevent them opening up more cap space.<br><br>New chief executive Paul Osborne also admitted today that Parramatta couldn’t match Manly’s offer for next season.<br><br>“They’ve offered him a lot more than we can and a few other things would need to happen before we could lock Joe down,” Osborne said.<br><br>“It is probably Manly or retirement for Joe unfortunately.<br><br>“I’d love to keep him but I got here a bit too late.”<br><br>Galuvao’s career looked to be on the skids two years ago when he was dumped from South Sydney’s top squad, but he has enjoyed somewhat of a resurrection since joining the Eels last season.<br><br>Incredibly, he is one of only four Parramatta players to have played all 16 games so far this season.<br><br>“It looks like Parramatta are out of the equation so it’s up to Joe now whether he wants to play on with Manly or call it quits,” Gainey said.<br><br>“We’ll wait until after tonight’s game and hopefully make a decision later this week.”<br><br>Osborne said that the Eels still had room for ‘one or two’ players to come into the top squad for 2010 but that it was unlikely they could include a player of Galuvao’s experience.