Official! Cleary signs monster Penrith deal
NSW Origin halfback Nathan Cleary has outlined his premiership ambitions, inking a massive contract extension with Penrith Panthers that will see him at the foot of the mountains until the end of the 2024 season.
The lengthy deal leaves the door open for his father, Ivan, to potentially re-join the club after his Wests Tigers contract expires.
"I'm excited to re-sign with the Panthers and commit the next six years of my career to the club," Cleary revealed on the club's official Twitter account.
"There was always going to be speculation but in the end it was an easy decision for me to make.
"This club and this community mean a lot to me. Panthers gave me the opportunity to debut as an 18-year-old and I will always hold that close to my heart.
"I've grown up with this team and I couldn't ask for a better group of players and coaches to work with moving forward.
"I want to become a leader here at the Panthers and I'm determined to help deliver a premiership to Penrith."
Cleary, a Penrith junior who represented the club's Harold Matts, SG Ball and NYC teams, has established himself as one of rugby league's premier playmakers.
Several clubs were after the Cleary's signature after the halfback's stocks soared following his Blues selection and subsequent State of Origin series win.
Earlier reports suggested Cleary was worth close to a $1 million a season.
"Today is a very special day in our club's history," Panthers executive general manager Phil Gould said.
"Everyone at the Panthers is delighted to know Nathan Cleary has committed to this club until at least the end of the 2024 season.
"This is a significant contract for Nathan but it's also a major investment by Panthers in its own future as an NRL club, and it's an important signing for the future of rugby league in Western Sydney.
"Nathan is an outstanding young man and I have no doubt he will be a future captain of this club.
"His best football is still well in front of him and we believe he will be the face of rugby league in this region for many years to come.
"To sign a deal of this significance with a player we have seen develop through our own pathways system, from a young age, is a special moment indeed."