[2022] R5 Bulldogs v Panthers - Game Day Thread

to the game at hand, should be an interesting contest where Barrett will intimately know many of our moves/structures etc. Yet despite that knowledge,he has to impart that on his team and from what we have seen from the Dogs this year is they are either unable to or not responding to his coaching.

that’s none more evident in Flanagan getting a start and the defence of him being run by none other then Gould the el supremo himself!

Will be a couple of doggies who will want to have a real dig namely Burton,Naden and Pangai, but sadly Burton has found out very quickly what playing behind a poor pack and ordinary half does to your game, made Burton look very ordinary himself.

I fully expect us to play a power game through their forwards and then unleash Cleary, Luai et al against a tiring side.

Dogs were bluntly humiliated last week, and that will call for a response from the entire playing squad and indeed coaching staff. How that manifests itself is to be seen but expect them to be super aggressive if not at times prepared to risk illegal play to try to unsettle us.

If this is another humiliation for the Dogs, i expect Barrett to be sacked. A lot going on in this game…the Gould anointing of Flanagan had red flags all over it for Barrett in my opinion.

will be interesting if the team closes ranks behind Barrett and have a real go or capitulate and seal his fate.

On the game itself…Panthers win, question is by what margin.


I’m expecting the Dogs to be up for the game. They will be stinging after last week, and a few of their players will be wanting to put on a good show against their former club.

In saying that, I just don’t think they have the ability in attack to roll us. The only way they will get over the top of us is if we have a shocker in attack.

While he was a good positional/attacking coach for us, Barrett has proven time & again he does not have the ability to be a head coach.

Looking at Burton’s stats when he played in the halves for us, we dropped from a 90%+ win rate, down to about 60%. Granted some of those games he was partnered with Tyrone May, who was hardly a first choice half himself, but I think Burton still has a long way to go to become a dominant halfback/five eighth.

Panthers to run away in the back end of the game & win by 20.

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I am of the belief that the only way we will loose or this game will be close if we loose the mental battle in preparation and game day attitude.

We can’t afford to treat any team as underdogs, especially this one as we all know this is Penriths 2nd division reserve grade side :rofl:.

I am confident from what I have seen since 2020 that we seem to be more mentally prepared than any other team in the comp (possibly barring the storm).

So with that said Penrith by 20+


Late Changes

The 17 is unchanged to what was named on Tuesday afternoon, while Robert Jennings and Lindsay Smith remain on the extended bench.


Despite the half time score, I think we are below our best. I think we have been guilty of getting ahead of ourselves at times. Probably lucky for the Dogs, this would be a cricket score if we were 100% on.

it was a win but ugly would be kind and i think its now time for Cleary to talk to Luai about shutting his mouth
I think we were more interested in niggling ex Panthers and forgot to focus on execution.

we should have absolutely lapped this mob but will happily take the win and hope Yeo is ok


I’m happy with that performance


Always interesting how ex players lift when they are up against the Panthers.

:mega: Panther Pride Man of the Match voting is now open here.

I think we need to accept this is how this year is going to be, we are no longer chasing the standard, we are the standard.

Teams are going to come out full guns blazing, knocking off the premiers can be just what some teams need to make a statement or even kickstart their season.

Full credit to the Bulldogs, they didn’t put the cue back in the rack. Apart from silly errors and penalties handing over possession they are showing signs of genuine improvement. I think if there is a take away from that match is they should persist with having Flanagan out in the middle. They looked better having him out there.

I thought that we were in second gear and got stuck there for much of that game. Yeo was amazing as usual, and Edwards just seems to get better every game, Tago and May was causing all kinds of trouble for defence out there.

Luai was off his game tonight. I don’t know why (the commentators were alluding to his cockiness out there) but I thought a fair few tried were buried out there tonight, it had the potential to blow out, and never really did.

We got the points, we are undefeated, it’s hard to complain. Bring on the Broncos.


I think at the moment the team basically plays at the level just strong enough to beat the opposition. You’re not going to maintain peak intensity all year and i think thats something Ivan learned last year.

Our last few games have basically been get out to an early lead > opposition scores > score right back.

This is a trend from our last 3 games - Knights, Souths and now Dogs. Broncos looked really good against the Roosters so i reckon they will need to lift the intensity up a gear to beat them more comfortably.


Solid win !
Nice to see Spencer Leniu and Mitch Kenny on the scoresheet.
Nathan Cleary’s defence was eye catching last night.
Matt Eisenhuth improving with each game.
Dylan Edwards fullback performance was masterful.

Nb Luau was off his game and Crighton/Staines doesn’t seem to work !


In a good, or bad, way?

went to the game, partly to review the stadium again ahead of commenting on the plans for our new home. It is a great facility, and whilst I have a lot of memories of Penrith Park and it’s evolution since 1967, there are a lot of upsides for having a new stadium.

We were clearly the better team throughout, even though the dogs tried to play their GF against us - we face the challenge each week of the other team trying to beat the premiers, and it’s something we have to live with.

We gave up a soft try, following a dumb play which is the only points the dogs got whilst the game was still alive. Luai’s dropping what was very ordinary kick to gift them points to me shows we are sometimes just getting ahead of ourselves - he was already looking to what to do after he caught the ball.

At one point we stopped playing our game, as we were having too much fun tormenting Dufty & from just after HT when Spencer scored the rest of the game was pretty awful.

Again Edwards shows just how good he is, attack & defence, especially now he is laying on both legs :slight_smile:

5/5 it’s hard to be unhappy, and we know we have the ability to lift when required, and Bizza and Moses to return. The points we are banking will be invaluable come origin time.


A good all round team performance, yes there were incidentals that we WILL improve but overall i was happy.

Even gave Eisenhuth a vote for MOTM. If he turns up and plays like that EVERY week, he will provide value of the bench.

You are 100% right @SteveTidball we are the bench mark and we SHOULD expect every week to put us under the pump.


Lots of great analysis here, as usual. I agree that Eisenhuth is like a fine red wine; he just seems to improve every game, and is becoming an integral part of the team. And the comments about Luai are spot on; he risks going from just being exuberant to being a pest.

I’ve been impressed with Staines’ improved energy, but is he destined for reserve grade after To’o returns?

Is all the traffic going down the left edge, starving Crichton and Staines of opportunity? Is so, is that a conscious action, or just reading the defence?

Lenui is still a bit of a loose cannon. Can he retain his energy but dispense with the angry pills?

How far can we go, including the next few years, with a small, mobile pack? Other teams have some giants, and we’re about to lose our one big weapon (Kikau).


I am hoping that’s where one Mavrik Geyer comes in. Hit’s hard and creates opportunities for those outside him to slip through the gaps he creates in the defensive line.


mind you Moses and Spencer will make pretty good 'book-ends ! :sunglasses:


Here’s some more random comments and questions in relation to last Sunday’s game against the Scumdogs, that I forgot to make :-

How much of Burton’s stellar year in 2021 was due to those playing inside him (and hence not transferable)?

Paul Vaughan seems to me to be a knee-lifter; as he approaches the tackler, he noticeably raises his leading leg. I recall that Brent Kite seemed to do the same. This poses a huge risk of serious injury to classic defenders like Koroisau who tackle low (like we were always told to do as kids). For me, it’s a worse offence than, for example, a stiff arm, and yet is NEVER mentioned. It should be outlawed!

Is Waddell another ex-Penrith junior?

How was the Pangai try allowed? Luai had dropped the ball and was clearly about to dive onto it to defuse the attack. Then Burns takes him out, gifting Pangai an easy try. Burns has time to pull out, but obviously had no intention of doing so.

Is any team in the NRL so unready for, so surprised by, short kicks and then fail to defuse them? We even seem to put out shortest players in the firing line, against their jumpers.

Waddell is a Panthers junior. From memory he left us to play for Manly about 5 years ago.

I made the same post about Burton earlier. His win rate with us while he was in the haves was 60%, in a team that was winning 90%+ during that time. Pretty much says it all.