Mannah: Final game at Pirtek is bittersweet
Dyldam Parramatta Eels Club Captain Tim Mannah says the upcoming Round 25 clash against the St. George Illawarra Dragons, the final clash at Pirtek Stadium before it’s redevelopments, will be a special occasion.
On a ground that Mannah has had a lot of good times and fond memories, the forward is hoping the Blue and Gold can use the final game as a source of motivation to claim the two points.
“The last one before they knock it down. I have had a lot of good times there but I think what is coming is going to be more exciting and something we can get excited about. It’s bittersweet,” Mannah told the Big Sports Breakfast on Thursday 25 August.
“It is a bit of motivation. We have had a season, as much turmoil as there has been, it’s one we can look back on with a bit of pride and it will be a great way to finish off our time at this stadium by having a really good performance and have a good win.” He added.
“It is definitely a game we want to go out on a good note with and there’s a chance to do that on Monday night.”
Coming off a performance against the Canberra Raiders which Mannah says the side is disappointed with, there are still plenty of positives to take away from the game.
Mannah is hoping the side can learn from the clash and put in a performance in front of a deserving Blue and Gold Army.
:Last week was more disappointing than anything. The pleasing part is the belief in our team that we can really match it with any team in the comp but the disappointing part was we didn’t get the job done,” Mannah said.
“We want to make sure we learnt our lessons from that game and get the job done this week.”
“If we could get a packed house that would be unreal,” Mannah added.
“The fans have been through just as much as we have this year, and they have really stuck solid. If they could come out, hopefully it could be a really special night come Monday.”
And when questioned on the off-field distractions surrounding the Blue and Gold in 2016, Mannah said that it had not affected the side, crediting his teammates and coaching staff for the way they had handled themselves.
“It hasn’t been as hard as it seems. We have a really good crew at our club, coaching staff and playing squad, that have really made this season seem it a lot easier than it could have been,” Mannah said.
“A lot of credit goes to the boys we have at the place and the way they have handled themselves make it easier for people like myself to get through the year.”
“That is the light at the end of the tunnel, the group we have and the direction we are heading in,” Mannah added when speaking about the stability around the side in the future, following the re-signings of Brad Arthur along with Corey Norman and Danny Wicks this week.
“There were some times from the outside it would of looked a bit messy and a little bit of a shambles from the outside, but we never lost our fight and what we had and where we are going. That is really what helped us get through some tougher times.”
The Eels kick off against the Dragons for the final game at Pirtek Stadium before the redevelopments on Monday 29 August, kick off at 7pm.