Moses Mbye wants to finish his Wests Tigers stint on the right foot, rejected claims of drama over a knee injury, has ruled out the Super League and doesn't necessarily want to return to Queensland.
A day after speaking to club officials to get permission to negotiate with rival clubs for 2022, Mbye fronted the media at Tigers training at Concord on Thursday morning.
He told NRL.com there was no misdiagnosis of a knee injury by the club's medical staff last year and he rejected claims it was among the factors behind his decision to explore his options next year.
Mbye cited a desire to start fresh elsewhere and the need for change were the main factors behind his request, not that he was reportedly upset over the handling of a knee injury.
The 27-year-old former Maroons utility injured his knee during a trial in March last year before having arthroscopic surgery in September in a procedure that ruled him out for the remainder of the season.
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"The club didn't misdiagnose me at all," Mbye told NRL.com.
"It was purely through normal protocol any medical staff would take.
"I sustained a knee injury during a game and then the following week I tried to get ready for the game, went through all the processes but got to captain's run and ruled myself out.
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"It was the following week that I went and seen a surgeon to have an arthroscope. It's quite routine in the NRL. It was never about being pushed to play through a knee injury.
"I missed four weeks because of the surgery. I want to clear it up because I was a little upset about it."
Mbye arrived at the joint venture club from Canterbury on a four-and-a-half-year deal midway through the 2018 season but has struggled to live up to the marquee price tag the Tigers paid for him under former management.
Acknowledging a release would suit both parties, Mbye is determined to end his time at the Wests Tigers on the right note.
He has all but ruled out a move to the English Super League given the current circumstances surrounding COVID-19 and with his young family comfortable in Sydney.
A move to Queensland appears to be the logical choice given he was born in Brisbane, grew up in Noosa and the Cowboys and Broncos have room in their salary cap to potentially strike a deal.
The Titans have also been mentioned in dispatches and the club is aware Mbye may be shopped to them but they are unlikely to enter discussions as they can't see where he would fit into their team.
"It's not my [whole] desire to go back to Queensland at all," Mbye responded.
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"I'm not shutting down any opportunity but there's no preference to where I want to go.
"It doesn't all have to happen immediately. I've just asked for the club's blessing. They've been great about it. They've agreed and offered me the chance to look around and if nothing arises I'll be at the Tigers."
Asked if playing on marquee money had caught up with him, Mbye added: "At this level no matter who you are or what player you feel some level of pressure.
"That's why it's the NRL and there is a very small minority who can play the game at this level.
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"If you're no feeling pressure you're not doing it right. The pressure is what keeps you coming back. You overcome adversity – that's the highs and lows of it.
"The reality is I came to this club as a marquee signing and in patches, I've been able to play to those standards but in other patches, I haven't.
"We've got some great young players coming through and the last thing you want to be doing is obstructing where this club is going to go."
Broncos coach Kevin Walters said Mbye could become a player of interest but added his son Billy Walters, who offers similar utility value, was a certainty to join the club from next season.
"He is certainly an Origin player, has good versatility as well, Moses. I would’ve thought he’d be a player that many clubs would be interested in," Walters said.
"[Billy's situation] is just parked at the moment. The Tigers are rightly so hanging onto Billy and we don't have a problem with that.
"We will march on with the players that we do have here and we will get Billy to the Broncos next season which is something we are all looking forward to."
Mbye has been named on the bench for the Tigers in their KFC Monday Football clash with Parramatta at Stadium Australia.