Brisbane prop Matt Lodge has assured his younger team-mates that there will be better days ahead if they stick together after the Broncos crashed to their 10th win in 11 matches against South Sydney on Friday night at ANZ Stadium.
While the Broncos showed improvement in the 28-10 loss, there were some moments they would rather forget, headed by Souths prop Mark Nichols scoring arguably the softest try of the season and a 10-4 penalty count against them.
Lodge and hooker Jake Turpin admitted the performance wasn’t good enough but believe that Brisbane’s fortunes will turn around if the players keep working hard for each other.
“It’s going to get better,” Lodge said.
“It’s like a reality TV show. Everyone is coming at us at the moment and we just love playing. We just need to get rid of that stuff and stick together.
“It will be good to show those guys what it’s like to be winning in Brisbane because there is no better feeling and at the moment it is not happening.
“There is definitely light at the end of the tunnel, we are not going to be like this for that long. At the moment it is a bit of a roller coaster but we have got trust in the club and everybody there so we won’t be in this position for long.”
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Sidelined for much of the season by injuries, Lodge said he had felt helpless as his team-mates struggled for confidence and form.
“It is hard to watch a losing streak like that, especially for some of the younger guys,” Lodge said.
“You don’t want to bring them into first grade into a losing culture like this.
“They haven’t seen the good times yet but a lot of those guys will if they ride this out. It is probably a shit experience for them to be a part of this first up but they have got a lot of good times ahead.
“It is not one or two people letting us down, it is a lack of communication and working as a team, cohesion and trust in each other. We have got to find a way to get it back and get it back quick. It’s not there at the moment and that is why we are leaking tries that shouldn’t be scored.”
Turpin said that effort wasn’t good enough.
“Everyone can have effort in the NRL, we have just got to be a smarter footy team,” he said.
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“That is not us at the moment, we are doing some dumb things and letting other teams score points easily and letting other teams get down our end too easily.
“When we start to fix that up and have that effort we might start to get some results.”
Teenage halfback Tom Dearden was a shining light for the Broncos, while the return of star second-rower David Fifita lifted the confidence of players around him.
Fifita, who has signed with Gold Coast, scored a try and played 80 minutes in his first match since the season resumed on May 28.
“We all know what Dave brings and having him there helps,” Turpin said.
“He had a young half inside him in Tommy Dearden and David just brings that X-factor that every team needs.
“Tommy is good, he is another person who brings a lot of effort and organisation. He is only 19 and to have that at such a young age is pretty good.”