Eels missing Gutho x-factor

Parramatta Eels coach Brad Arthur can’t wait for Gutho to return

In the light of yesterday’s defeat at the hands of western Sydney rivals Penrith Panthers, Parramatta have slumped to their worse start to a season since 1991 and are in contention for the wooden spoon.

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At times in attack in their 12-6 loss, Parramatta looked disjointed with the pairing of Mitchell Moses and Corey Norman unable to make any inroads into a Panthers defence, which repelled set after set of six a predictable plan.  However the Eels defence deserves credit with Nathan Brown leading from the front and taking up to the likes of international prop Reagan Campbell-Gillard and in-form James Fisher-Harris.

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The return of Clint Gutherson from injury could go a long way to fixing some of the attacking flaws currently haunting Arthur’s Eels.  He was hot property in 2018 having a sublime season until it all came crashing down in round 20 against the Wests Tigers when he suffered that ACL injury.  Since that night, Parramatta have won only five matches out of fourteen.

What Gutherson would contribute to attack is a little bit of flair and off the cuff play, with a preparedness to take on the line.  He was effective in 2017 scoring eleven tries in his eighteen appearances in the blue and gold.  The performance against Melbourne just a week prior to his season ending injury was match-winning.  Gutherson would also bring influence in the misfiring back line and take a little pressure of Moses to provide all the play making.

There’s no doubt that Gutherson needs to be playing up in the attacking line alongside Moses.  This is dependent that Bevan French is to return to the custodian role of fullback come this week’s team selection for their trip to Canberra after injury.

An out-of-form Norman, linked to a move to the nation’s capital should be banished to the interchange as more of an impact bench player.

Parramatta Eels fans can’t wait for Gutho to inject some magic on their side.

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