Gallen welcomes Carney signing

Cronulla Sharks captain Paul Gallen has welcomed his club's new signing, five-eighth Todd Carney, with open arms.

Speaking to NRL.com from the Kangaroos' Four Nations base in Manchester, Gallen admitted he had actively sought to bring the former Dally M Player of the year to the Shire.

“I’ve been very vocal in wanting Todd at the club,” Gallen told NRL.com.

“Probably more importantly I just wanted to see him play in the NRL (next season). He is a world class player and I think he deserves to play in the best competition.

“I’m just happy that I get to play alongside him for the next couple of years.”

The Sharks have struggled in recent years, but Gallen believes the exciting playmaker could be the component his club has been missing to push for a finals berth in 2012.

“I think he brings a lot to the club,” Gallen said.

“He brings something that no player in our squad has. [There] are probably very few players in the whole NRL [that] have his ability.

“His ability to break the line and kick, pass, he is a wonderful talent. He is certainly going to help our side.

“I like to think he is going to help our outside backs a lot, I think we held our own in the forwards and probably struggled out wide in scoring points.”

The Sharks scored just 75 tries last season and their inability to get across the white line ultimately cost them any chance of a finals berth despite stringing together a five-match winning streak.

Gallen hopes Carney will create more opportunities for the outside men and will also help the Sharks win the close games, something they failed to do in 2011.

“You look at our season and we missed the eight by three or four wins, and we probably had eight games decided by six points or less,” he said.

“We were well and truly in those games with 10 minutes to go, so hopefully he brings that finishing touches that we need.

“I think his kicking game and his passing game is going to be the most important thing to our side and obviously goal kicking too is going to be a big plus.

“He is going to be huge for us and I like to think he will make the difference for us making the finals this year.”