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Controversial soccer star Israel Folau could play NRL again this year after St George Illawarra has announced that he is chasing the 31-year-old

The Dragons have confirmed that they have reached out to the NRL to help Folau join the club this year

“There is a process of review that involves multiple stakeholders, including the NRL,” said a Dragons spokesman

The association has been talking to Folau since December New coach Anthony Griffin is part of an effort to sign the former star

“Now we are working with the NRL to address any concerns about registering a contract for them

“We understand that there will be a range of opinions on this decision, but we believe it would be a good addition to our club”

The NRL said the club’s motion included provisions on Folau’s public and social media comments Immediate termination was suggested if he breached these terms

Folau was struck down by Rugby Australia in 2019 after a series of homophobic social media posts, and Peter V’landys, chairman of the Australian Rugby League Commission (ARLC), said at the time the code-hopper’s comments were not matched with the rugby league

“The game is inclusive Israel’s comments are not included,” said V’landys in his first press conference as head of ARLC in 2019

“When I was a kid and kids were always beaten up because they were different, I always defended them, and many of them because their role models or colleagues made them that way

“I have no tolerance for people who endanger other people’s lives or commit violence. It’s a great statement to make

“With due respect for Israel, young children listen to what he says. He is a role model and they act accordingly

“And if you’re a kid in school and you get beaten up for being different, I don’t think that’s a good thing”

Peter Beattie, the predecessor of V’landys, previously stated that the NRL would block any offer for Folau to return to the game

Folau played 91 NRL games with the Melbourne Storm and Brisbane Broncos from 2007 to 2010, including Queensland and Australia, before letting the code for the young GWS Giants in the AFL on their way to a more successful rugby union career

The 31-year-old devout Christian reached a confidential settlement with Rugby Australia in December 2019 after suing the Code of religious discrimination for his dismissal

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Israel Folau

World News – AU – Dragons ask NRL for permission to bring Israel Folau back into the league