Sports

Junior Paulo says he hasn’t signed with Canberra Raiders rivals

"Im trying to do my best here for the Raiders at the moment. Obviously Id like to stay but Im just trying to play some good footy at the moment and do what is right for our team here at Canberra.

"No I havent [spoken to the Eels], not since contract negotiations. Its something I will leave up to my manager to do. Ive got to be able to play good footy and Im happy here at the Raiders at the moment.

"No I havent [spoken to Cronulla] as well. Theres obviously been contact through my manager and I have only been told its been several clubs from Sydney or elsewhere.

"My job right now is for the Raiders and thats what Im here to do."

Paulo joined the Raiders via Parramatta during the 2016 season in a bid to escape off-field drama and get his life back on track away from the Sydney rugby league bubble.

But he could return to the struggling Eels, who could be set to pay big overs to sign Paulo for the 2019 season in a bid to avoid the horrors of this year's ill-fated campaign.

The Eels are gearing up for a player cleanout with a host of underperforming stars off-contract next season but Paulo won't rush into a decision until "the time is right".

"Its obviously going to come but its up to me to play some good footy and it will make my decision a lot easier if Im playing good footy," Paulo said.

"Hopefully we get a good win this week against the Rabbitohs. Ill take into consideration these offers but right now Im just happy being here in Canberra and playing some good footy.

"Obviously Ill be looking to find happiness with my career on the field and off the field as well so its definitely going to be a hard decision to take it but for now Im focusing on playing the Rabbitohs this week."

Paulo says it the rumours surrounding his future are not unsettling as he looks to help the resurgent Raiders storm back into finals contention.

A Ricky Stuart spray proved to be the turning point in Canberra's season so far with the Green Machine racking up two straight wins to sit one game outside the top eight.

It comes after a winless opening month and Paulo says his focus is solely on playing well for the Raiders.

"Theyre only reports, I dont read them through the media or read newspapers away from footy," Paulo said.

"The decision will come when Im happy to make one but for now Im just looking to play good footy and hopefully thats what Ive been doing."

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Caden Helmers

Caden Helmers is a sports reporter for The Canberra Times

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