Dyldam Parramatta Eels centre Michael Jennings says the Blue and Gold have welcomed back halfback Kieran Foran to training ahead of their Round 11 clash with the Melbourne Storm, saying it was great to see number seven return upbeat and back out on the training paddock.
“He trained with us today, and so far so good. He is pretty positive, and he trained well today so it’s good to have him back,” Jennings told the media on Friday afternoon.
“It gives a lot to have him back. Him and Normy, having that combination helps out a lot. It’s good that he is back, he is upbeat and it’s good to see him like that.”
“The main thing was to see him back out on the paddock and train well” Jennings added.
Whilst his return may benefit the team, with Head Coach Brad Arthur discussing the possibility of him returning to take on the Storm, Jennings was more focused on ensuring that Foran’s wellbeing was being looked after and said the Blue and Gold were behind their teammate.
“Brad is happy he is back and happy that his wellbeing is being looked after first,” Jennings said.
“Seeing him back on the paddock is good for him, all the boys are behind him and BA is always behind him.”
“He is the ultimate professional so he would have been looking after himself whilst he was away from training. He didn’t look out of beat when he was on the paddock,” He added.
The Eels have faced a handful of off-field distractions over the past few weeks, however Jennings said that it was not affecting their Round 11 preparations.
Out of their hands, Jennings said the side has remained positive on controlling what they can control.
“The mood is positive. Everyone is up beat and everyone is staying away from all the stuff that is going outside of footy,” Jennings said.
“We cant really control that, and everyone is really focusing on what we can do on the field. That’s really all that we can control, getting wins on the field, and we are focusing on that.”
“As a group we are all doing that well.” He added.
With the Eels suffering a heartbreaking loss to the Rabbitohs last week, Jennings said the side would practically need to win all their remaining games for a shot to make it into the Finals.
“We have to look at it, [12 from 14] that way,” Jennings said.
“If we are going to be realistic, we need to look at the numbers.”
“We do need to win basically every game so we understand the position we are in. We just want to win and take each week as it comes.”
And with the Origin period on the horizon, the outside back was hoping to receive a phone call this week and secure his spot in the NSW Blues line up, however he knows it is out of his hands.
“I don’t read the papers or watch the news,” Jennings said.
“All I can control is playing some good footy and if I get the call up, then I get the call up”
“I definitely want to get back. Who doesn’t want to play for their state and play up at that level and in that arena.” Jennings added.
“I definitely want to be back there.”
The Eels take on the Melbourne Storm at Pirtek Stadium on Monday 23 May.