The final match of Round 4 of the 2013 NRL sees the Sydney Roosters play host to the Parramatta Eels at Allianz Stadium. The match will be played at 6:30pm on Easter Monday.
The Roosters, who spent up big in the player market during the off-season, have strung two wins together and sit in seventh place on the ladder.
The Eels are going through a rebuilding phase after earning the wooden spoon in 2012. Under the new tutelage of Ricky Stuart they have already improved and are currently 9th on the ladder.
The two team’s closeness on the competition ladder is in stark contrast to their positions in premiership betting markets. The Roosters are currently on the 5th line of betting at $11. The Eels are at $51 and only three teams are given less chance than them to win the 2013 grand final.
The Roosters last two wins have been low scoring affairs, none more dour than their 8-0 win over Brisbane last weekend. The Eels matches have all been high scoring affairs; it will be interesting to see how this one pans out.
Roosters 1-12 – $3.10
Roosters 13+ – $2.35
Eels 1-12 – $4.60
Eels 13+ – $7.50
Roosters -8.5 – $1.91
Eels +8.5 – $1.91
The Roosters have won 4 of their last 6 against the Eels.
The Eels have won 2 of their last 5 at Allianz Stadium
The Roosters have won 3 of their last 8 at Allianz Stadium
The Roosters rookie coach Trent Robinson showed that he will not tolerate poor discipline from his players. Robinson has stood down back rower Luke O’Donnell for this week’s game for turning up late to a training session. O’Donnell’s place on the bench will be taken by Aidan Guerra.
The Roosters has also named giant rookie prop Kane Evans on an extended bench as eighteenth man.
For the Eels, Ken Sio has been named to replace Cheyse Blair on the wing. Sio will look to recapture the form that saw him have a great 2012 as a rookie.
The experienced Luke Kelly moves into the starting line up as five eighth which will see Ben Roberts relegated to the bench.
Matt Ryan will miss the match with a knee injury. This will force coach Ricky Stuart to play Ben Smith in the second row, with Joseph Paulo at lock.
The Roosters opened 2013 with a loss to the red hot South Sydney team 28-10. Since that opening match they have put two consecutive wins together and look to be improving each week.
In Round 2 they travelled to New Zealand and led 16-0 before the Warriors stormed home. The Roosters managed to hang on and win the game 16-14.
Last week’s 8-0 victory over Brisbane highlighted the improvements to the Roosters defensive unit. They appear to be developing the ability to establish a lead and defend it strongly. This has been a trademark of many good sides in recent years; it may augur well for the Roosters on that basis.
Parramatta commenced their season with an entertaining 30-10 win over the Warriors. The win gave their fans plenty of reason to hope after a frustrating 2012. They were not far from making it two from two when they pushed the Bulldogs all the way in Round 2, eventually going down by just two points (16-14).
Last weekend against the Tigers, the Eels put on their worst display so far for 2013. The game seemed to be a procession of errors, the upside of the loss being that the Tigers still struggled to put them away. There is no doubt that there is a little more flair about the 2013 Eels outfit, the question marks will be over their consistency and execution.
The Roosters have impressed with their defence in their last two games. However, with Parramatta’s matches tending to have an open nature so far this season, we may see more of the Rooster attacking prowess in this one. Michael Jennings would revel in any extra open space afforded to him and may come into play a lot more in this encounter. The stability that James Maloney is providing for the Roosters cannot be underrated. He has provided great support for Mitchell Pearce and is leading the way in the halves. Sonny-Bill Williams’ return to the NRL has been well documented. Williams’ is finding his feet slowly in a game that is very different to when he departed 5 years ago. Jared Waerea-Hargreaves rampaging hit-ups have been a feature in the Roosters three games to date; look for him to cause the Eels defenders a handful.
For Parramatta, a lot will rest on the shoulders of rookie Jacob Loko’s shoulders. Loko has proven himself as a hard running centre so far in 2013. His ability to break tackles is providing fans with a real spectacle. Chris Sandow is earning back the respect of the Blue and Gold loyalists with his performances so far this season. A leaner looking Sandow appears to want to be involved more. His kicking game is vital for Parramatta. His will to compete looks as strong as it has been for some time and the Eels need him involved heavily in this match. Jarryd Hayne looks at home again in his role as the Eels custodian. Hayne has all the skills and can turn the game in the twinkling of an eye. The Eels will need his brilliance to win this game.
Based on the Roosters recent ability to keep sides to low scores, it looks like they will stifle Parramatta’s attempts to out “run and gun” them.
If the Eels can manage to get the match to be played in a more open fashion then they will be in this up to their ears.
Expect the Roosters to be too strong in the arm wrestle and win this game.
Roosters by 8.
Michael Jennings is yet to score a try this season; he is $9 with www.sportingbet.com.au to open the scoring here if you think this is the game.
The Roosters ruck speed looks as good as any team in the competition. On the back of quick play the balls it might be an idea to look towards the speedy Jake Friend too. Friend is currently $34 with www.centrebet.com to score first but a massive $41 to score last when players may be fatiguing.
NRL Round 25 Betting: Parramatta Eels Vs Sydney Roosters – Friday 26th of August
There are 2 Sydney games on Friday night and this is the one that everyone will be going to…. well, maybe those that could not secure a seat at the packed house of Brookvale will show up, but not many else. This match is definitely overshadowed by the Eagles Vs Storm clash at Brookvale, and I would be surprised if anyone shows up. If I were in a position to watch this live or the Eagles match on tele, I would have to choose the Tele!
Even though there will be far less interest and even fewer spectators I expect we will still see a good clash between 2 teams that have not done so well in 2011. The Roosters were able to get their first back to back wins in 2011 last week as they proved too much for the Sharks at the SFS. The Eels were actually in a position to beat the competition number 2’s last week as they led for a majority of the match. This is not the first time the Eels have been in a good position to win against a good team in 2011, their failure to capitalise is the only reason they won’t be a part of September footy.
The Eels are hosting the Roosters at Parramatta where it is the Roosters that have the historical advantage with 10 wins and 9 losses to the tri-colours. The Eels have them when it comes to total wins though, with 59 playing 57. So these two are about as close as you can get when going through the archives.
There are a couple of factors that go against the Eels in this one;
Recent against the Roosters – The Chooks won the most recent 2 matches against the Eels, and have also won the 2 most recent played at Parra Stadium.
Recent Form – The Eels managed to lose by just 4 and 6 points to the current competition 1 and 2 in the last month. This is super impressive, but in the same period (1 month) they have lost by 19 and 50 to teams 6 and 9. Look at that pattern and you will notice that they seem to lose by more to worse teams and by fewer points to better teams. If they continue with this pattern they will lose to the Roosters by 75!
The Roosters beat the Dragons 2 weeks ago and with their next match against a team that had lost 5 in a row they were in a good spot to get their first back to back of the season. This week they are up against a team that has lost 6 in a row, so surely they are in line to secure their first and only possible hat trick of 2011. There will be a lot of fight in the Eels though as they have come a lot closer to beating quality teams than the Roosters in 2011.
The Roosters will win this one in attack. There was a period in the Roosters season where they were getting fewer points scored against them, but at the same time their attack dropped by even more. Something happened in the coaching that took the team away from their strongest aspect, and that is scoring points. They have only recently rekindled this flame and scored an average of 24 points over the last month. If you look at the 3 wins in this period their average is up at 29 points.
So as long as Brian Smith has not focused on defence at training this week the Rooster should get up, it’s as simple as that!
This one is almost a coin toss but only due to the fact the Eels worry me in their close matches against good teams. I have to take this out of the equation though as they don’t play well against poor teams, so there is no reason they should do so against the Roosters. Keep on scoring Chookies and this is all yours and the team will look forward to a healthy off season.
The team with 6 losses in a row to their name are surprisingly the favourites coming into this one, which makes the $2.07 for the Roosters all the more sweeter. Get on 7 or over for $3.35 as this is paying well and the bottom line is that it is paying!