Cody Walker, Latrell Mitchell, Lachlan Ilias, hooked, South Sydney Rabbitohs, contract, Wayne Bennett

Phil Rothfield believes Souths have to be cautious of their negotiations with Cody Walker and Latrell Mitchell with Wayne Bennett circling and slammed the decision to hook rookie Lachlan Ilias.

The Rabbitohs had been blown off the park by the Dragons in Spherical 15 and now face the toughest run residence of any of the highest eight sides in a bid to play finals.

Added to their on-field struggles, the Rabbitohs have their two finest gamers in Walker and Mitchell coming off contract subsequent season and free to barter with NRL rivals from November 1 and Rothfield believes the membership has a battle on their palms to maintain each gamers.

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“Souths have Cody Walker and Latrell Mitchell beneath contract for subsequent yr,” Rothfield mentioned on NRL 360.

“However as of November they will discuss as a package deal or on their very own to rival golf equipment.

“There’s a man in Brisbane known as Wayne Bennett who loves him (Walker) and is in search of a playmaker.

“The issue Souths have gotten is that they have a historical past of stuffing up negotiations.

“That they had Adam Reynolds and so they had Alex Johnston and so they all went pear-shaped, so that they want to do that not so publicly and with not a lot drama.”

In the meantime, James Hooper believes the choice to make Ilias the scapegoat for his or her horror present in opposition to the Dragons was the improper one and will have a long-lasting unfavorable impact on the younger playmaker.


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Cody Walker is down on type and coming off-contract subsequent season.Supply: Getty Photographs

“I feel they’re in plenty of hassle,” Hooper mentioned of Souths on NRL 360.

“They had been putrid in that opening half in opposition to St George Illawarra. I can’t recall the final time a Souths facet performed that poorly.

“Clearly the large story out of the sport was that coach Jason Demetriou made the large resolution round younger gun halfback Lachlan Ilias.

“I’ve acquired to say, I didn’t agree with it. At that stage of the sport to hook a creating playmaker I feel it shatters his confidence and I feel there’s going to be some scar tissue rolling ahead.”

Paul Kent questioned why there was a lot give attention to Ilias’ efficiency in opposition to the Dragons when senior playmaker Walker was additionally off his recreation and annoyed into shedding his head in key moments.

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Rabbitohs younger halfback Lachlan Ilias was hooked within the first half of their no-show in opposition to the Dragons.Supply: The Every day Telegraph

“Why a lot on Ilias’ efficiency and never Cody Walker’s efficiency the opposite night time?” Kent mentioned.

“Cody Walker is the senior playmaker.”

“That’s the million greenback query,” Hooper replied.

“I can reply that and I’ve mentioned it in columns that they did the improper factor in hooking the child within the twenty eighth minute,” Rothfield mentioned.

“What he doesn’t have and Cody Walker does is type. He was No.3 within the Dally M’s final yr.

“You don’t drag Cody, however I wouldn’t have dragged the halfback both.”

Kent believes Walker wants to indicate extra management and alter his risky method to have a extra optimistic impression on his teammates, who desperately want him to indicate the best way ahead.

“Cody has acquired to grasp that he’s a frontrunner and a senior a part of that workforce and he wants to hold himself above his personal actions for the time being,” Kent mentioned.

Latrell Mitchell is coming off-contract in 2023.Supply: Equipped

“From the standpoint of a number of the petulance that we see out of him.

“He must curb that if solely to set an excellent instance for the blokes round him as a result of it doesn’t appear to be having a optimistic impression on his workforce.”

Rothfield believes the final spot within the prime eight may come all the way down to the Rabbitohs and the Roosters Spherical 25 conflict to open the brand new stadium at Moore Park in gentle of Souths’ horror run residence.

“The Rabbitohs are on 16 competitors factors,” Rothfield mentioned.

“I’ve had a detailed have a look at their draw. I feel they’ll want 26 to scrape into the highest eight this yr.

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“Their draw is the toughest of any of the contenders. They have to play Storm. They have to play Penrith. They have to play the Cowboys. They’ve then acquired Parramatta twice then Roosters and Sharks.

“That massive recreation on the new stadium in Spherical 25 may properly be the primary week of the finals for the Roosters and the Rabbitohs. It’s a monster recreation.

“They may each have to win to make the eight. With that draw and so they have had their bye I can’t see them (Souths) making the eight.”

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