Gutherson happy to fill the gaps
Parramatta Eels utility Clint Gutherson has become Mr Fix it for the blue and golds this season and will continue to play the role in a bid to ensure the side returns to a winning formula.
The 22-year-old has floated between five-eighth and the No.1 jersey in 11 appearances this season with six tries to his name and is also the club's primary goal kicker in 2017 striking at 72.5 percent – although that mantle could soon be taken over by Wests Tigers recruit Mitchell Moses in the coming weeks.
Gutherson linked with childhood mate Moses for the first time in the NRL Telstra Premiership on Saturday night in Parramatta's 22-16 loss to Canberra and believed the result was one that got away from the home side.
"It was fairly disappointing to be honest, we were in the game with about 15 minutes to go and then we sort of just took our foot off the throttle," Gutherson said.
"Mitch [Moses] and I kicked a few dead which cost us in the end and some drop ball really hurt us.
"We're not happy with just improvement, we want the win so we trained today in the gym and the training paddock really wanting to turn it on."
The addition of Moses in Parramatta colours five months earlier than expected was all the more beneficial heading into the Eels' next six rounds with the loss of Corey Norman to a knee injury.
However when Norman makes a return, the additional half could force Gutherson elsewhere in Brad Arthur's line-up with Bevan French currently in the fullback spot.
"We've had a few injuries so I'm just chiming in where I can at the moment with Bevan coming back puts me back in the six," he said.
"It was good timing to be honest with Corey going down and Mitch coming in. He is just going to bring what he brings… he's cool and a calm head on the field with a lot of skills to throw it around.
"I'm filling the spots but I don't know yet [about the future]."
While both Gutherson and Moses go way back to junior level, the halves pairing showed signs of flare during the clash but the 22-year-old admitted an extra amount of video work would be required this week in a bid to fine tune the combination.
"I played with him (Moses) back in school footy and a lot here and there so it was good to finally play with him in the top grade and not against him," Gutherson said.
"We've got to make it click as soon as possible with every game important here on in because if we cant it's going to cost the team.
"We've looked at a lot of video in the last few days to see where we can chime in each other's game so just the little things that could help personally speed up the process."
With no player selected in State of Origin for Game One, the Eels have identified the next block of football leading into their first bye in Round 16 as crucial to get their season back on track.
"There are four-point or six-point games on the line so we've got to look forward to Souths on Friday night despite not winning," Gutherson said.
"The extra couple of days training this week will really help us in the weeks to come and in the long run."
Parramatta have lost centre Michael Jennings (quad) but welcome back Brad Takairangi from a knee injury, while lock-forward Nathan Brown is in doubt for the clash against his former club on Friday night with a rib complaint.