Tedesco's signing kept Gordon at Roosters

Sep 21, 2017 - 5:10 AM Veteran Sydney Roosters fullback Michael Gordon could have been preparing for potentially his final NRL game this weekend if the tri-colours hadn't signed James Tedesco for next season.

Gordon entered the season seriously considering retiring from the NRL and moving back home to NSW north coast to play country rugby league.

The one-time NSW State of Origin representative will play his 225th NRL game in Saturday night's preliminary final against North Queensland, after stints at Penrith, Cronulla and Parramatta.

Tedesco's signing was originally seen by many as the beginning of the end for Gordon, who admitted he was starting to feel the effects of a 12-year NRL career on his body.

But the Roosters fullback has revealed the club's decision to sign the NSW Origin No.1 and RLPA player of the year, was what prompted him to continue for another year.

"They've signed Tedesco and I don't have to play fullback - that's a big factor of why I stayed," Gordon told AAP.

"Fullback is such a demanding position and the way we play it, they demand a lot out of you. I don't know if I could have done it, if I had another year there.

"So now my role, whatever it is next year, I'll worry about it then. But at least I know I won't be fullback; I won't be in such a high-demand position."

Gordon signed a one-year extension with the club in July, after he kept close contact with coach Trent Robinson throughout the process of negotiating Tedesco's arrival at the club.

He also had interest from a number of other NRL clubs, but was keen to keep his young family in Sydney's eastern suburbs with his oldest son having just started school.

"Robbo told me that even if they do sign (Tedesco), they still want me to hang around," Gordon said.

"That gave me more confidence."

Gordon was once engaged in a head-to-head battle to claim the fullback position from Lachlan Coote at Penrith midway through his career.

He has played in the No.1 almost exclusively since moving to the Sharks in 2013 and then the Eels in 2016. But the veteran admitted it had never been such a demanding role as it is under Robinson at the Roosters.

"It's high demand wherever you play but especially the way we play it here it's a physical toll on the body," he said.

"A lot of the stuff I do with Robbo is very specific."

Source: AAP

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