NZ Warriors in shock Shaun Johnson u-turn

Sean Johnson. Photo: Getty Images
Sean Johnson. Photo: Getty Images
Former Warriors halfback Shaun Johnson has signed a two-year deal to return to the club that made him a star.

Johnson, who played 162 games for the Warriors over eight seasons, comes off contract with the Cronulla Sharks at the end of the season and is understood to be excited to finish his career with the New Zealand club.

The New Zealand Herald understands the deal was agreed yesterday after talks started around a week ago.

According to a source close to the deal, the "stars have aligned" allowing Johnson to come back.

Johnson left the Warriors in 2018 in dramatic fashion with the club and coach seemingly, and very publicly, appearing to lose faith in him. The Herald understands that the reported bad blood between Johnson and some in the club when he left is no longer considered an issue.

While no details on his new salary at the Warriors have been made available, Johnson signed a two-year deal with the Warriors in 2017 that made him the highest-paid player in the club's history and their first million-dollar man.

Johnson will face the Warriors twice more for the Cronulla Sharks before the end of this season.

Speaking to Fox Sports after a game two weeks ago, Johnson said the decision to let him leave the Sharks came as a surprise but he was open to any opportunity that comes his way.

"I got the news a couple of weeks back and it wasn't the news I wanted to hear," Johnson said.

"I'd hoped to see my career out at this club. They gave me an opportunity three years ago and I certainly enjoyed my time here.

"It's not meant to be, they want to head in a different direction and I do respect that but for me all I can focus on is coming out here and getting some games under my belt and trusting that next year will take care of itself.

"Tonight hopefully helps and if there's any clubs out there after a halfback, I'm your man."

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