To secure a spot in 2nd position, the only thing the Roosters have to do is beat a severely under-strength Titans side. However Rugby League’s a funny game as they say so it’s anyone’s guess as to whether everything will go according to the script.

Last Time Out  

The Roosters prevailed 16-14 in a showdown with the Sharks that confirmed their place in the Top 4. With the Sharks having 68% of the possession, the Roosters showed determination in defence to turn the Sharks away time and again. However their execution was incredibly poor as they made 15 errors for the match and bombed a couple of tries yet again. A win is a win though and the game was decided on Michael Gordon’s boot as perennial complainer Paul Gallen held on too long in a legs tackle on Boyd Cordner.

The Titans found themselves 20-0 down at half-time against a Bulldogs side that had finally found their mojo in attack thanks to a nothing to lose attitude from unwanted Hooker Michael Lichaa. To their credit the Titans came out of the sheds with a better attitude as they looked to restore some pride in their final home game for the year. They scored two quick tries in the 2nd half to get it within 10 points, a try going to Anthony Don courtesy of a moment of team madness which has become customary for the Titans in 2017. It was a spirited effort in attack and defence, however it wasn’t enough and the fact the only Dogs try in the 2nd half came from Ash Taylor passing it Josh Morris on the line calling for it, just about summed the match up.

Key Battle

The Roosters against their own complacency.

The players can front up to the media and parrot out the same old tired spiel of not underestimating their opponents all they want. It’s whether they deliver on that promise come game day that really matters. For a side that stands to take 2nd spot on the ladder, they have been incredibly inconsistent and have barely put together any 80 minute performances. It’s that tendency to drift in and out of games that could lead to disaster.

The Titans are fielding an unrecognisable side with names even devoted League fans may struggle to recognize. If the Roosters nod off at any time, the ability of Taylor/Elgey to capitalize on that is the only chance they have. The Titans young forwards are inexperienced but they have nothing to gain by playing it safe so that could also be a potential threat for the Roosters. For all intents and purposes though the Chooks will only lose if they allow themselves to.

Prediction

I wouldn’t write off the chances of a Titans upset entirely. In 2013 it was the Titans who handed the Roosters side their last loss on the way to the premiership. It was a similar story, the Roosters were certainties up against an under-strength Titans side and nobody gave them a hope. Before anybody knew it the Titans put 30 on the best defensive team of the year.

Times have changed since then though. On paper there is absolutely no way the Roosters should lose this. Embarrassing losses can serve as wake up calls before finals but the Roosters have been inconsistent enough without needing an upset of gargantuan proportions to set them straight. Roosters by 30+ at the very least.

Squads
1. Michael Gordon
2. Latrell Mitchell
3. Ryan Matterson
4. Mitchell Aubusson
5. Blake Ferguson
6. Luke Keary
7. Mitchell Pearce
8. Jared Waerea-Hargreaves
9. Jake Friend ©
10. Dylan Napa
11. Boyd Cordner ©
12. Aidan Guerra
13. Isaac Liu
INTERCHANGE
14. Zane Tetevano
15. Siosiua Taukeiaho
16. Kane Evans
17. Connor Watson
RESERVES
18. Joseph Manu
19. Victor Radley
20. Lindsay Collins
21. Mitchell Cornish

Gold Coast Titans
1.
Jarryd Hayne
2.
Anthony Don
3.
Phillip Sami
4.
Leivaha Pulu
5.
William Zillman
6.
Kane Elgey
7.
Ash Taylor
8.
Morgan Boyle
9.
Pat Politoni
10.
Agnatius Paasi
11.
Kevin Proctor ©
12. Joe Greenwood
13.
Max King
INTERCHANGE
14.
Jamal Fogarty
15.
Nathaniel Peteru
16.
Eddy Pettybourne
17.
Ben Nakubuwai
RESERVES
18.
Keegan Hipgrave
19.
Alexander Brimson
20. 
Kobe Tararo
21.
Apiata Noema