Warriors boss Jim Doyle is anxious that departing star Kieran Foran gets plenty of support around him when he returns to Sydney for the next NRL season.
Doyle hinted there is concern the 26-year-old is leaving Auckland prematurely to the city where off-field problems plagued his life before signing a one-year deal with the Warriors.
Foran announced on Tuesday he will finish with the Warriors this season and is close to finalising a three-year deal at Canterbury.
Doyle, who has forged a close relationship with Foran, revealed the player’s wider family were keen for him to stay in New Zealand, where he has enjoyed a settled lifestyle.
Any chance of that happening ended last week while Foran was in camp with the Kiwis in Sydney.
He met his ex-partner, along with their respective lawyers, and proposed remaining with the Warriors after spending the coming off-season in Sydney to be with his two children.
He would then continue to see his children every couple of weeks when the Warriors crossed the Tasman next year.
“Recently it was more and more about that he wanted to stay and he tried to make that happen,” Doyle told Radio Sport.
“But it’s not to be and therefore he has to go back.”
Foran left Sydney following a tumultuous 10 months which included a broken relationship, a probe into his links with a gambling identity and a drugs overdose.
Doyle says despite progress in Foran’s personal rehabilitation this year, he feels uneasy about his return to the inevitable spotlight of Sydney.
“That’s one of the main reasons his family were keen for him to stay here as well,” Doyle said.
“Yes, yes, it is (a concern). That’s something he’ll no doubt continue to work with specific people over there. I’m sure the Bulldogs will put support around him.
“Certainly, he got himself into a pretty dark hole just over a year ago.”
Doyle defended the signing of Foran at what he said was “a very low cost”.
He said the five-eighth brought a winning mentality to the Warriors which he expects to rub off on players in future seasons.