Last week, Parramatta Eels Head Coach Brad Arthur spoke with Big Sports Breakfast about the Blue & Gold squad returning to training after their New Years break and their preparations for the 2017 NRL Telstra Premiership

Hit play on the video above to listen to the full interview (Wednesday 18 January 2017).

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Brad Arthur says the Eels squad can’t wait to get back out there on the field, with the Blue and Gold eager to play for something.

“We are glad we got through 2016 and it can only make us stronger,” Head Coach Brad Arthur said.

“We are training really well, and the coaches are really happy with where the team is at at this point of the year. “

“Our boys are really keen to get on the field, it has been a long wait for us, because since May we have been waiting to play for something. “

“The boys are looking forward to getting on the field and since Bernie Gurr has come in, our leadership is nice and strong above me and we think we are on the right path.”

Arthur did not want to pinpoint any of the new recruits who had impressed him during the pre-season, saying all the new faces had been putting up their hands.

“They have all been great for us to tell you the truth,” Arthur said.

“Frank Pritchard has a real bit of determination about him, Nathan Brown brings that bit of aggression, real silky skills and footballing ability which you might see a bit more passing out of our forwards this year that he has brought.”

“Matagi from Penrith, geez he carries the ball nice and hard and aggressive and will be a real handful with the footy as well.”

Arthur however did confirm who will fill the vacant number one jersey.

“Bev [Bevan French] will get first crack at fullback, he has trained there all pre-season. A big thing with me for Bevan is his physical attributes in terms of, he can see plenty of opportunities I just don’t want him to miss any from his conditioning levels coming from the wing after playing the majority of there last year for us.”

“We have had a big focus with Bev on his work at training, Clint Gutherson is probably our stand out in terms of fitness, but Bevan is working really hard to try get up there with him.”

The Eels will have two pre-season trials in February, against the Gold Coast Titans and Penrith Panthers, following their 2017 Auckland Nines campaign, before the 2017 NRL season gets underway with a Round One clash against the Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles on Sunday 5 March at Brookvale Oval.