Parramatta Eels coach Brad Arthur says he feels calmer around his team’s form, because he knows they will roll their sleeves up and not give up.
Arthur speaks about their win over the Knights, having Maika Sivo’s dad attend his first NRL game and the Eels’ finals hopes in his post-match press conference.
Read on to see what he had to say.
On the Eels win
“They were desperate, you know, we were, both teams were desperate for the points. I know there were a couple of errors at the back end but I thought they played well. They came to play, both teams were physical, raced off the line, got stuck into each other, a few tries because it was hard work,” Arthur said.
On the Eels improvement in recent weeks
“We’re prepared to roll the sleeves up and build our game. That’s what we have been trying to do for a period now, working at building our game. In the past probably have been in a bit of a hurry to get a result,” Arthur said.
On whether the Eels are a finals team
“We still have a bit of work to do. A couple more wins (until they’re a finals team). It would be nice to get a home final, but we have a bit of work to do, to make that happen. We enjoy playing here and it would be nice to get a home final. We still have a bit of work to do, but I thought a step in the right direction tonight, when we lost a couple of sets there and they went with back-to-back tries; we hung in there, rolled up the sleeves and went again,” Arthur said.
On where the team is at
“Yeah, the guys have probably instilled a bit more calmness in me, because I know I can rely on them now. I knew they were going to roll their sleeves up and stick to the plan and if was good enough to get the job done, then great,” Arthur said.
On whether the Eels are an 80-minute team
“Slowly, we’re getting there. We haven’t proven anything yet, but we’re heading in the right direction. If we work hard and we have 17 players each week, most coaches will say if you have 17 players each week that do their job, some weeks is going to look more spectacular than other weeks, but you’ve got 17 blokes pushing in the right direction. We had Kane Evans ruled out before the game, the next bloke needs to just play his role for the team and it makes it a lot easier. We didn’t play like a team last year,” Arthur said.
On whether patience is key to Eels success
“I think Mitch and Gutho at the moment, are playing with a real level of composure and that fills me with calmness as well, knowing they’re going to be sticking at it for the 80 minutes. Sometimes that won’t be good enough, but we’ll give ourselves a real good chance,” Arthur said.
On Maika’s dad being at his first NRL game
“Yeah it’s great, it’s great for the club to show how much we care about our players and to get his dad over. It’s his first time for his father to be on a plane and he was quite emotional when he came into training yesterday at the end of the session so it’s been a bit of a journey for Maika and I’m really happy for him. He had no idea, the club did a really good job, he had no idea,” Arthur said.
On what he expected of Maika when he joined the club
“Oh I wasn’t expecting him to be leading the try scoring, but I had high expectations around how he would be able to perform. We were quite vocal about it early in the peace; you know he was going to be a good player. He still has a lot to learn about the game. He didn’t really get a full pre-season with us so another pre-season will help him,” Arthur said.