Troubled Carney suspended indefinitely - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Troubled Carney suspended indefinitely

By Steve Jancetic 19/04/2011 07:41:28 PM Comments (0)

NRL chief executive David Gallop claims Todd Carney's blatant flouting of promises to get his life back on the straight and narrow proved just how troubled the wayward star's life had become.

The Roosters on Tuesday imposed an indefinite ban on Carney and hooker Anthony Watts, the latter set to face the Roosters board to explain why his contract shouldn't be torn up.

Carney was spared such extreme measures after his late night drinking session with Watts over the weekend. The pair went back on their word to abstain from alcohol as they visited several notorious nightspots until 4am on Sunday.

The night out ended with Watts being charged with assaulting his ex-girlfriend, while Carney was left fighting to save a career which seemed to be blossoming with last year's Dally M winning season.

But the 24-year old has gone off the rails since, with the Roosters giving no timeframe as to his NRL return as they step up medical support for his alcohol-related issues.

Gallop warned Carney after his last indiscretion - when he had avoided a jail term earlier this month in relation to a low-range drink-driving charge - that he was on his last chance, but the NRL boss said now was not the time for the game to abandon him.

"If he'd engaged in anti-social behaviour, if he'd brought himself to the attention of the people that are running these establishments for behaving poorly, then he'd have a target on his back that we wouldn't miss," Gallop said.

"Our own investigations indicate he didn't behave badly in those establishments, but there's a big question mark over what he was doing there, and what his mental state was to find himself there in such a public place.

"This is a guy with a history, a guy who gave some pretty big undertakings to the world a couple of weeks ago and I think it's his reckless disregard for those undertakings that's perhaps the most alarming aspect of where he's at.

"... to go to (Kings) Cross, where he was bound to be seen, to me shows that he is very much a troubled person at the moment, and that makes me sad for him."

Gallop said the NRL and the Roosters would be guided by the advice of medical experts.

Roosters chief executive Steve Noyce was explicit in his explanation that the cases involving Carney and Watts had been treated as separate issues, with Watts due in court on Thursday.

Roosters coach Brian Smith applauded the club's decision to stand by Carney, admitting it had been obvious to all at the club that something was amiss with the wonderfully talented playmaker, who battled injury and poor form over the opening month of the season.

"We've all known that there have been issues for him and he's not been quite the same guy with us this year as what he was when he was at his best during the course of last year," Smith told AAP.

"We've all tried to work with him and understand him but we've reached the point where even Todd realises he needs expert help - he doesn't need a footy coach, he doesn't need a CEO ... he needs professional assistance."

Asked about Carney's current state of mind, Smith said:

"I think he's in a good place - the thing with the type of assistance that Todd needs is that you've got to want it, and he's ready for it."

Watts will now front the Roosters board to answer a breach notice, with Noyce claiming:

"There are five options available to the board from fines, suspension and clearly termination of contract."

Smith admitted Watt's chances of saving his Roosters career appeared slim.

"It just didn't work out with us with Anthony - we couldn't supply him with whatever he needed," Smith said.

"At this point in time I think he's got to show cause and I guess that will be a difficult thing for him to do."

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