AAP Rugby

Coach recalls embarrassing Eels NRL effort

By AAP Newswire

Brad Arthur described it as embarrassing.

The Parramatta coach obviously wasn't talking about his team's historic 58-0 thrashing of Brisbane in Sunday's NRL elimination final.

Arthur was referring to their own 54-point humiliation in May against Melbourne, who the Eels face in Saturday's semi-final at AAMI Park.

The Sydney Roosters await the winner in the preliminary final, while South Sydney and Manly face off in the other semi for the right to travel to Canberra.

The Eels enter the clash with the minor premiers after claiming the biggest win in finals history, eclipsing Newtown's 48-point victory over St George in 1947.

"I didn't think we were going to play that well," Arthur said.

"I knew we were going to come and have a red-hot crack. And some days, it just goes to plan and it did today. I'm proud of the boys. We need to enjoy it.

"But we got a tough game coming on Saturday."

And that'll be against the Storm, who are 80 minutes away from their off-season after being upset by Canberra 12-10 on Saturday on their own turf.

However, they'll be armed with the knowledge that they pumped the Eels 64-10 back in Magic Round - with 40 of those points coming in the second half.

"We're different today than what we were then. It was embarrassing. We let a lot of people down, probably more so ourselves," Arthur said.

Asked if he would bring up the match in preparation for this weekend's clash, Arthur said: "I don't think I even need to. I think they still remember.

"You don't forget performances like that."

Arthur also refused to erase the memories of their most-recent final two years ago at AAMI Park, where they blew a halftime lead in their qualifying final.

One week later, they were knocked out by St George Illawarra, but Arthur recalled how they missed their shot against the Storm.

And he made it priority No.1 this week.

"Our start. We went there a couple of years ago in '17 and we probably didn't start that well the first 10-15 minutes," Arthur said.

"They jumped us and we come back and put ourselves in the contest.

"But our start's going to be really important and then, from there, it's just a matter of hanging on and trying to dig in for the full 80 minutes."