South Sydney Rabbitohs, Lachlan Ilias, Braith Anasta, Adam Reynolds, Broncos, Latrell Mitchell, Cody Walker, NRL 360, Paul Crawley, Dave Riccio

It has been revealed that up-and-coming Rabbitohs halfback Lachlan Ilias “undertook” his new deal in a bid to keep the club’s superstars together.

Ilias recently signed a three-year extension to 2025, which his manager Braith Anasta said was for less money so Souths could keep players like Latrell Mitchell.

Anasta also revealed on NRL 360 that Ilias played this season for about $600,000 less than what Adam Reynolds asked to stay with the club.

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“We signed him a three-year contract from this year and I can say it’s a good deal, but he took unders,” said Anasta.

“Because he wanted to keep Latrell and (Cody) Walker and (Damien) Cook and (Cameron) Murray because he could see himself in a good system where he could win a premiership.

“We didn’t want to go to the open market because he was happy there and played good football and protected the team, and he wants that team to stay together because he can see a premiership in the coming years.

“I think Reynolds has been a great buy (for Brisbane), it’s a win-win. Souths made the right decision and the Broncos got Reynolds.

“But Reynolds is also 32 and the last six games of the league this year the Broncos have been terrible and he didn’t finish two of those games.”

Lachlan Iliad of the Rabbitohs. Getty ImagesSource: Getty Images

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Veteran journalist Paul Crawley said Ilias has “did a fantastic job” this season, but claimed Souths should have kept Reynolds.

“I don’t think the Rabbitohs have gone backwards, but I look back at Adam Reynolds’ situation and I still think they’ve become a better football team without Adam Reynolds,” he said.

“In my opinion, the Rabbitohs should have done more to keep Adam Reynolds because I’m pretty sure no written offer was ever made.”

“He wanted two or three years of at least $800,000, which is probably $600,000 more than what Lachy is getting paid this year,” Anasta countered.

“What I’m trying to say is if you sat in a room with Adam and you could have come to an agreement over a period of two years,” Crawley said.

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“They are now in a window where this is their fifth consecutive Preliminary Final, I wouldn’t say the loss of Adam Reynolds puts them in a better position to win this match. Last year they lost four regular season games with Adam, this year they lost ten.”

But fellow journalist Dave Riccio told Crawley there would be consequences to keeping Reynolds.

“So if South Sydney loses Damien Cook or Cody Walker or Latrell Mitchell because they kept Adam Reynolds, are you glad they kept Adam Reynolds?” said Riccio.

“I don’t think it will turn out that way. They would have lost other players,” Crawley said.

“No, they would have lost one,” Anasta said.

“What about next year when Lachlan Illias plays with the Bulldogs, Titans or the Tigers and then in two years Adam Reynolds retires and South Sydney goes ‘ok where’s our halfback’, he’s already left,” he said. Riccio.

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