Off-contract Manly backrower Joe Galuvao is adamant he's happy for the Sea Eagles to slow down his negotiations if it helps the club retain their bevy of young stars.
The 33-year-old, who also declared himself a likely starter against former team Penrith in Friday's NRL clash at Brookvale Oval, has enjoyed an outstanding start to 2011 and is keen to extend his career beyond this season.But the selfless Galuvao urged Sea Eagles chief executive Graham Lowe and coach Des Hasler to lock up the club's brilliant young fullback William Hopoate and 21-year-old backrower Jamie Buhrer first.
Buhrer has locked down a spot in Hasler's top 17 as a versatile member of Manly's forward pack, while Hopoate has been a revelation filling in for injured star Brett Stewart - and has already attracted plenty of attention from cashed-up rival clubs."I have no problems at all with the club signing the young guys and if that benefits the team, I'd like to think that I'm a team player and if it helps Manly in the long run then I'm happy to stand aside and let the young guys come through," Galuvao told AAP."They've done such a wonderful job and to be honest, they deserve whatever contracts come their way and I'll be behind it 100 per cent.
"... Obviously human nature makes you a bit selfish and I'd want some security and all that stuff, but I'll always back the club's decision."I've been around long enough to know it's a business at the end of the day and it's nothing personal."It's going to be about money and if they had all the money in the world they'd keep all the players that they want."
Galuvao has started the season in excellent fashion, averaging 100 metres and 22 tackles per game - both nearly doubling his 2010 numbers.The consistent efforts have convinced the former New Zealand international that he still has plenty to offer in the NRL."I'm loving my footy, I'm 33 and it doesn't get any easier but especially with all the young fellas around, and just playing with world class players, it motivates me to keep going," he added.
"I think from now on it's a year by year prospect, I'm not getting any younger but the club's indicated that there's an opportunity for me to stay there."But in saying that we'll just see how the body pulls up ... I'm sure I'll make my mind up in the next couple of weeks."Galuvao passed a fitness test on his injured right foot on Wednesday and said a final training session on Thursday would determine whether he played.
"If I pull up alright there's a good chance I'll play," he added.
TeamPts1. South Sydney182. Sydney Roosters163. Melbourne154. Manly135. Newcastle126. Brisbane107. Cronulla108. Gold Coast109. Canberra1010. Penrith811. North Queensland812. St George Illawarra813. Canterbury-Bankstown814. Parramatta615. Warriors416. Wests Tigers4