Dyldam Parramatta Eels Assistant Coach Pete Gentle says the Penrith Panthers will be tough to stop, but the Blue and Gold is ready for the challenge at TIO Stadium for Round 22 tonight.
In this week’s Unibet Game Day Preview, Gentle says the Eels have worked hard in Darwin this week.
“[The Panthers] will be tough, they’ve got a tough game to defend against with their ad-lib footy,” Gentle said.
“But we’re looking forward to it, we’ve had a good week up here, the people are terrific up here and we’ve settled in well.”
With Will Hopoate, Brad Takairangi and Corey Norman all returning from injury, the Eels’ left edge will be playing in their favourite positions for the first time in a number of weeks.
“We’re all happy to see that, not that the other boys haven’t done a good job, but it’s a very good strike weapon we’ve got on that left edge,” he said.
“It also gives some experience with them coming back into the team, and a bit of confidence and belief in what we’ve got, so the boys are buzzing.”
Addressing specific areas the Panthers excel in, Gentle highlights their halves Isaac John and Jamie Soward, and hooker, James Segeyaro.
“They’re pretty good right across the field and you can’t afford to shut down just one person,” he said.
“They’re number one in offloads in the competition, and we’ve worked hard on our defence this week and I think we’ll see some results from that.”
The Eels kick off against the Panthers tonight at 7pm local time (7.30pm AEST) as part of NRL Indigenous Round.