Dyldam Parramatta Eels prop Junior Paulo says the battle up front with the imposing Rabbitohs pack was as tough as expected on Friday night.

“I’ll be honest, I’m pretty rattled at the moment,” Paulo said.

“For me, it’s a challenge every week coming up against senior forwards, but I guess a positive with us is being able to match it with them and for our forwards just to stay in the grind with them.”

In the lead up to the game, Head Coach Brad Arthur emphasised the need for the Blue and Gold pack to aim up, and Paulo said his message at training didn’t waver during the week.

“That was Brad’s main focus this week, to just be physical with Souths.”

“They’re a big pack and we just had to smash them, and then in the end I guess they just polished up better than us on their plays and came through with the win.”

The 32-12 Rabbitohs win saw two Eels forwards cross the line to score, with second-rower Tepai Moeroa scoring in just his second NRL game, and Joseph Paulo adding another four-pointer.

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