Crucial talks on the future of the NRL grand final will be held today as a war of words erupts between the New South Wales government and league bosses.
New South Wales had a deal to host the league decider until 2042 but that became null and void when the state government backflipped on a plan to upgrade Stadium Australia.
The NRL now wants that funding to go towards upgrading suburban grounds instead but has become frustrated at the lack of planning by the government.
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Queensland has since tried to swoop in, reportedly offering millions of dollars to host multiple grand finals at Suncorp Stadium over the next decade.
Victoria has also expressed an interest in securing the big dance, which could spark a Superbowl-style bidding war.
New South Wales Premier Dominic Perrotet insists the NRL grand final will be played in Sydney.
“No one wants the grand final in Queensland, including Peter (V’landys),” the Premier said.
“As Peter knows all too well, we have invested record amounts in stadiums and sporting infrastructure. He also knows that having the grand final in Queensland is a bad outcome for the NRL, for every club and most importantly the fans. So he’s not taking it anywhere.”
Sports Minister Stuart Ayres took it a step further suggesting the ARL Commission boss might want to start looking at real estate in the Sunshine State.
“We’ve invested substantially in rectangular venues, which the NRL is the major beneficiary of. We’ve been a great long-term partner and I think the fans expect that the game stays here,” Mr Ayres said.
“If Peter V’landys took the grand final to Queensland, he probably should move up there, too.”
“If I want to attend major events maybe I have to move to Queensland,” V’landys told the Herald. “Destination NSW wouldn’t know an event if they fell over it. We haven’t even heard from them.”
Mr V’Landys hit back at the jibe, firing his own shot ahead of the talks.
“If I want to attend major events maybe I have to move to Queensland,” V’landys told Nine Newpapers.
“Destination NSW wouldn’t know an event if they fell over it. We haven’t even heard from them.”