Fresh news from NRL.com Monaghan keen to re-sign 11 May 2005 Inspirational skipper Michael Monaghan says he hopes to re-sign with Manly this week despite speculation linking Melbourne halfback Matt Orford with the Sea Eagles. Monaghan's manager Jim Banaghan had claimed that his charge was "devastated" after Manly withdrew its offer to the class halfback. But Monaghan today said talks initially stalled due to Banaghan's overseas commitments but had resumed again and they hoped to finalise a new deal "this week". "We started negotiations but my manager had to go overseas for a month so the club was basically keen to sign me before he left but we ran out of time," said Canberra-born Monaghan, who turns 25 on Friday. "I told the club I wouldn't sign while he was away so they have taken it off the table. "But now he's back we will start negotiations again and hopefully have it sorted out this week." The hiccup in negotiations prompted talk that Orford - off contract at the end of 2005 - would be coveted by Manly. Orford has also been linked with English club Warrington and the Gold Coast 16th team bid which hopes to enter the NRL in 2007. Manly executive director Paul Cummings said he hoped talks with Monaghan would be finalised in the "next month or so". "The manager can do what he wants for whatever reasons he wants to do it," Cummings said of Banaghan's initial claim. "All I will say is that we see Michael as a very valuable part of our plans going forward and I am fairly comfortable in my own mind that it will sort itself out in the next month or so." Monaghan said his future at Manly was not in doubt. "I don't think so. The club has told me they are keen to sign and they know I am keen to stay so it was just the problem of my manager being overseas that has made it difficult," he said. "There is talk they have spoken to him (Orford) which I can understand considering they need a halfback for next year. "They didn't want to be left in a situation if they did lose me they were without a halfback next year and there are a couple of other halfbacks on the market, so they had to act quickly for next year." Monaghan admitted he "couldn't be happier" at Manly, which is equal NRL leader on points and in line to make its first finals campaign since 1998. But the Eagles captain - who took over from veteran backrower Steve Menzies just last year - wanted contract negotiations over sooner rather than later. "The way the club is going at the moment, we still have a long way to go but the future is bright for Manly and things are only going to get better," he said. "(But) you don't want these type of things (contract negotiations) hanging around for too long. "We've got a pretty tough month of football coming up so I don't want to be dealing with this sort of stuff during that."