Footy IQ and Footy Smarts

This concept of IQ and footy smarts has become popular in recent times and I'm starting to wonder if we recruit from the other end. i.e. like picking a monkey, because you know you can train Parra's case it seems that in terms of defense, technique and strategy that we are untrainable!

I look at our two wingers and one centre, throw in Cartwright.....and anyone that looks like a bopper and is not junior or rcg......when they tackle they get up on the wrong side of the ruck, invariably when they tackle the tackled player is up before they are and finally how many players trip over themselves to chase when they miss a tackle.

The technique we have is almost comical and on the other side of the coin, our best two tacklers are our halves and who most people think lose us every match we don't win.

A fecitious observation on behalf of this little black duck is that we got what looked like the perfect forward in Hopgood, it has taken us 3 matches to bring him back to looking like a mediocre Parra standard.....on top of this we have a coach who is abject about bench rotation, but decides to fix this by rotating off our best forward in Hopgood......

Sounds like a plan or a script for a Charlie Chaplain movie........for the IEE supporters who do not know who Charlie Chaplain is think of a skit with Waqar Blake and Simmonsson on the ground playing knuckles with a football and not being able to figure out why the ball doesn't balance on the back of their hands!

I watched the Souths vs Easts game last night and saw 17 stone forwards who had good corordination, knew how to tackle and last for at least 10/15 minutes and thought to myself, where do we find these type of players......obviously we should be recruiting in the Eastern suburbs of Sydney in the more expensive areas and away from the lower socio economics of Sydney's West., 

Finally I wonder what Trent Barratt says to his wife after coming home from a Parramatta guess is it goes something like " Christ, they said I was a dumb bastard" I'm not in the same league as these blokes!".......god knows how they ever got to a grand final last year?

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  • First time I've seen a jounalist credit BA with the problem at the eels some good points and close to the truth.

    Arthur’s “lack of concentration” comment pulls at deeper Eels’ problem

    The Eels have a problem, but is the fix as simple as a change of tactics from the coaches box?


    The Parramatta Eels have officially fallen to a zero and three start in the 2023 NRL season, which could quickly become a zero and five start on account of their tough schedule to open the campaign.

    Last year's grand finalists would have been hoping to hit the ground running this year to move on from last year's premiership decider defeat at the hands of the Parramatta Eels, but they have done anything but.

    That has created very relevant questions over some of their recruitment and retention decisions, with the most notable of those being the exit of Reed Mahoney, only for the club to reportedly spend as much, or potentially more, on Josh Hodgson.

    While not a lot made sense off the field over the last 12 months for the men in blue and gold, they now have a very real issue with results, and if they do go zero and five, it could almost be curtains on their season - if not for the top eight, then certainly for the top four.


    Things will get easier after the horrid opening five weeks, which includes playing three teams in a row coming off a bye, and you'd expect a turnaround, but when Brad Arthur can only sit in the press conference and suggest a lack of concentration from certain players in key moments, there is clearly a deeper issue running through the club.

    “We need more than fronting up with effort each week – we need to execute our plan,” Arthur said during the post-game press conference.


    “At different stages with individuals – there's a lack of concentration or the simple fundamentals we're getting wrong which is really hurting us.

    “We had four sets down in good ball and I don't think we got to the end of the set in any of those. We're making it hard for ourselves by shooting ourselves in the foot.”

    But that deeper issue is something Arthur needs to address in his coaching style, rather than it being any individual player.

    Sure, you can point the finger at fitness, or the fact Josh Hodgson hasn't quite fit in yet, or the fact their defence doesn't seem to be up to par.

    GettyImages-1466928613-scaled.jpg 696w, 1536w, 2048w, 1068w, 1920w, 630w, 600w" alt="NRL Pre-Season - Knights v Eels" width="100%" data-lazy-srcset=" 2560w, 696w, 1536w, 2048w, 1068w, 1920w, 630w, 600w" data-lazy-sizes="(max-width: 2560px) 100vw, 2560px" data-lazy-src="" data-ll-status="loaded" />

    And it's not - leaking 34 points if you're going to be a premiership contender simply isn't good enough.

    But when Arthur didn't swing his first chance from the bench until the 27-minute mark and then gave his bench players 34, 27, 18 and 14 minutes respectively, the awkwardness of a comment around lack of concentration becomes clear.

    Manly had already run on two fairly soft tries by the time Parramatta made their first change of the game, and some of the damage had already been done, but it continued with missed tackles becoming a theme of the performance.

    For all the good J'maine Hopgood has done so far in the number 13 jersey so far this year, another four missed tackles on Thursday evening ensures he leads the competition in the stat no one wants to be anywhere near with 16 in three games.

    While the bench players barely saw the park, the influence of Junior Paulo, who played 66 minutes, was debatable, with Reagan Campbell-Gillard also playing more than 50 minutes on what was a warm night in Sydney.

    Bryce Cartwright never looked like playing 80 minutes successfully but did so anyway despite Jack Murchie only seeing 34 minutes on the park, while Wiremu Gregig and Jirah Momoisea - both props capable of handling themselves - barely made a dent in the game and frankly, would have been better off giving up their spot to a utility, even if that did mean bringing Jakob Arthur into the side.

    There is no doubt Paulo and Campbell-Gillard are among the best players in the NRL, and that Hopgood has had a wonderful start in the blue and gold, but there is also very little doubt that playing a team coming off a bye, the Eels had to be different in their strategy, and they simply refused to move the needle.

    GettyImages-1472459390-scaled.jpg 696w, 1536w, 2048w, 1068w, 1920w, 630w, 600w" alt="NRL Rd 2 - Eels v Sharks" width="100%" data-lazy-srcset=" 2560w, 696w, 1536w, 2048w, 1068w, 1920w, 630w, 600w" data-lazy-sizes="(max-width: 2560px) 100vw, 2560px" data-lazy-src="" data-ll-status="loaded" />

    It's no good burning players who then aren't going to produce at the same level, and unfortunately, it's not the first time an argument has been made such as this about Arthur's coaching style throughout his career.

    Arthur has been extended by the Eels, but the talent of this squad should have won a premiership over the last couple of years.

    Instead, they had three semi-final exits which left Arthur all but needing to make the grand final last year to save his job. No coach should ever need to go that well to be renewed by a club, but that's where the Eels sit.

    Arthur can blame lapses of concentration all he likes, but when he has major issues over giving bench players minutes, has Josh Hodgson playing the full 80 week in and week out - something most clubs don't do with their number one dummy half anymore - and refuses to acknowledge that changes are needed against teams coming off the bye, it makes the comments look somewhat odd.

    It's worth noting that Shaun Lane and Ryan Matterson are still to return to this side, but I'm not sure in the slightest that they are going to fix all of the issues which are currently presenting themselves.

    Parramatta are off to a horrendous start in 2023, and Arthur needs to think on his feet quickly if he is going to save the season.

    It's still early days and more than salvageable, but a zero and five start will be nigh-on impossible to recover from.

    Scott Pryde
    Scott is Zero Tackle's editor.
    • "Last year's grand finalists would have been hoping to hit the ground running this year to move on from last year's premiership decider defeat at the hands of the Parramatta Eels, but they have done anything but" 


      So a journo writes this and then an editor checks it before it's submitted and everything yeah ? These clowns went to University to be crowed a " journalist ". Didn't they  ?  , or are they just basement dwellers that can simply upload opinions like any of us on here ?


      ** Edit , this blokes the editor 😂

      Parramatta Eels
      The latest Parramatta Eels NRL news and player rumours, including team history, stats and player profiles.
  • yes but if you get past the 1 mistake it sums up the eels pretty well and is what a lot of supporter believe


    • I dunno, I can't get past it, he seems like a hack that's simply cruised this site , taken all the grievances of us amd rolled it into an article fishing for clicks and likes from Eels fans simply happy to see their complaints and opinions moonlighting as a proper media article.  It's kinda validating to think the " eggsperts " see what you see.   As per your initial comment " this guy agrees with my opinion "  mate I'm not trying to be a wanker , I'm just saying this dude is merely a hack.


      Im not saying he's completely wrong on some points , but I guess if you mention every single thing that's been mentioned on the Eels forum over 100 threads in the last 3 weeks , ya bound to get a few points that everyone agrees with. 

      Last year we finished the season very fit , we went to North QLD and outlasted the Cowboys in their back yard. One could argue that was due to our conditioning with the bench , maybe I'm wrong.  Penrith had a far superior team talent wise , you'd hope that our star halves would develop into the extra talent we lack , so realistically if we can get to the same fitness levels , we should be a better team. And as old mate says , we still have The Jew and Lane to return. 


  • Yes Poppa, I said a while ago Hopgood would suffer under our system and some genius on here called me a clown. Fair enough. The problem as I see it keeps getting extensions.

  • Brad doesn't want players that are smart. This way, no one cne can question his simple game plan because they're flat out trying to understand it.

  • you know pops,  I've always thought timmy mannar was a good example for your  around the play the ball  ruck observation especially in the back end of his career . ie too slow getting up or some unnecessary infringement or an accidental feet tangled,  anyway you'd think the coaching staff would nip this in the bud to those  who even looked clumsy in their character or just plain tired.  hey pops  did you  know  that Charlie Chapman  came  second place  in a Charlie Chapman look alike competition many many  moons ago  🤔 

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