A semi-contrite Paul Gallen has apologised for his mind-blowing midweek Twitter rant against the NRL, taking to social media again to say sorry.
After the embattled Cronulla Sharks showed CEO Steve Noyce the door earlier this week, Gallen – who is holidaying in Hawaii – tweeted his displeasure: “Steve Noice (sic) actually cared about players from cronulla’s feelings. Couldn’t say that about any other c— from Nrl.”
The obscene tweet was swiftly taken down – but anyone with 35,000-plus followers can’t get away with a quick retraction, and it inevitably went viral.
Clearly realising the blue he’d made, the esteemed Cronulla and NSW captain – who is currently under suspension from the NRL for testing positive to a banned substance – attempted to make amends today.
A photo of text on Instagram, which he also tweeted, read: “I would like to apologise to anyone I offended in my tweet yesterday and to anyone who who took offence to the language I used. I realise in the position I’m in this was unacceptable. Gal.”
It was an apology of sorts…but Gallen didn’t exactly take back what he said. It appears he was only sorry for dropping the ‘C-bomb’.
The hierarchy at Cronulla and the NRL were publicly disappointed and are sure to be privately seething at Gallen’s attack, considering his standing in the game and his status as the face of the Sharks.
Gallen, one of Cronulla’s greatest-ever players, will front the club’s board for a ‘please explain’, while the NRL will undoubtedly step in with its own penalty if the one the Sharks mete out is not deemed harsh enough.
The debacle has already led many to question the prospects of Gallen continuing as NSW skipper for a fifth season.
Any demotion would be an enormous fall from grace for the inspirational forward – he was lauded as a potential Immortal earlier this season after skippering the Blues to a historic series triumph and collecting the Wally Lewis Medal.
But in the current climate – and considering Gallen’s recent suspension – it would not be a surprise to see the cherished role taken away from him.
It’s not the first time Gallen has ended up in the headlines for the wrong reasons after spouting off on Twitter. Last season, he got into an ugly slanging match with Brian Smith over comments the former high-profile coach made about Gallen’s clash with Sydney Roosters tyro Dylan Napa.
Gallen said his Twitter account was in fact being used by his father, Garry, when the fiery retort to Smith was sent.
The constant trouble NRL players find themselves in via social media – even revered figures such as Gallen, a relative cleanskin off the paddock – continues to baffle.
Although losing the NSW captaincy, or incurring a further heavy suspension or fine, might seem harsh, Gallen only has himself to blame.
He has always been a respected, outspoken figure, and slagging off the game’s powerbrokers is not a new phenomenon…but you can’t get away with calling them c*#ts.