Phil Gould believes the Roosters’ hunt for a three-peat of premiership titles is over in the wake of their 60-8 to the Rabbitohs because they are not the team they once were.
The Roosters finished the regular season in fourth place and despite getting a second chance if they lose to the Panthers in week one, Gould believes the 2020 team is not as good as their title winning teams form the last two seasons.
“There’s no Cooper Cronk this year, there’s no Latrell Mitchell,” Gould told Nine’s 100% Footy.
Kayo is your ticket to the 2020 NRL Telstra Premiership. Every game of every round Live & On-Demand with no-ad breaks during play. New to Kayo? Get your 14-day free trial & start streaming instantly >
TRANSFER CENTRE: Raiders lock up Hodgson’s breakout star apprentice
“Some of the older players have been showing signs of wear and tear. They’re back to back premiers. That takes a lot of toll out of your team. It’s not the team it was.
“There were enough easy games in this competition to keep them ticking over, they were always going to hop on one leg and make it into the top-four. But they’re just not in the premiership hunt at the moment, and it finally broke for them the other night, it really did.
It looked like finally, this was the straw that broke the camel’s back.
MORE NRL NEWS
‘WOULD DIE IF IT ENDS IN TEARS’: Gus warns Kevvie ‘careful what you wish for’
“This is not the team they were. They’ve been up for a long time. Everyone plays against them like they’re playing the defending premiers. They’ve played a lot of hard football. “They’re a good side but they’re not a premiership side right now. You can’t compare them to what they’ve been.”
Get all the latest NRL news, highlights and analysis delivered straight to your inbox with Fox Sports Sportmail. Sign up now >
However the Roosters players are seething after they were embarrassed by the Rabbitohs, according to Danny Weidler, who believes they can use that anger to bounce back.
“I spent a bit of time with the Roosters this week,” Weidler told 100% Footy.
“I caught up with about eight to ten of their players and they are pissed off. They’re really angry about what they did.
“Particularly the person who I found most upset and with the most fire in his belly was Luke Keary.
“He knew he was targeted by Souths, he knew that he had a below-average game and he had to get dragged in front of about ten different media organisations and talk about it.
“He left there fuming. If you wanted a bloke with a bit of fire in his belly, I think he’s got it. He’s got the anger.”