NRL 2024: South Sydney Rabbitohs problems, Jason Demetriou, Blake Solly, Cameron Murray, who’s to blame, reaction, Latrell Mitchell

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An NRL great believes the power brokers at South Sydney and some key players are just as much to blame for the turmoil and poor on-field performances as coach Jason Demetriou.

Demetriou is expected to be relieved of his duties in the coming weeks, amid the bottom of the ladder Rabbitohs’ form slump which has seen them lose 15 of their past 20 games.

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NRL360 host Braith Anasta says the club has lost “complete control” and the issues the Rabbitohs are facing start from the “top”.

“I’ll tell you what I think. I think that it’s the leadership at Souths as well as the coach,” Anasta said.

“We identified this problem ourselves on this show from the outside looking in a long time ago. We’ve been saying the problems that have been there. We’ve been hearing the noise and spoken to the players.

“We’ve heard about the Sam Burgess (saga). That was eight months ago.

“The leadership of the club have to acknowledge and take responsibility, instead of trying to change the narratives or agendas through papers and articles and trying to give these players excuses and instead of making the hard calls, have to change what has been happening inside these four walls for a long time.

“Now, they want to discipline the players, now they are telling Latrell (Mitchell) he can’t go to the farm but the horse has bolted.

“It’s from the top down to the bottom. If you are a leader there you need to make the tough calls, you need to identify the club isn’t in a good position before it gets out of hand but they’ve let it get completely out of hand and now they’ve lost complete control.”

The Daily Telegraph’s Phil Rothfield pointed to the departure of former coach Wayne Bennett and halfback Adam Reynolds at the end of the 2021 season as a catalyst for the club’s free fall we are seeing now.

“You’te talking about Sam Burgess and the leadership he brought there but you’ve got to go back further than that,” Rothfield said on NRL360.

“In 2021 when Wayne Bennett and Adam Reynolds, the heart and soul of the club, both left at once, that is such a massive blow.”

NRL360 co-host Paul Kent believes recent moves the club has made goes against “their own values” while critiquing the way Souths powerbrokers have reacted to negative press about the team.

“They wouldn’t sign Adam Reynolds because he was over 30 but they’ve gone and signed Jack Wighton who’s over 30. They’ve gone and re-upped Cody Walker’s contract who’s just about 35.

“They’ve gone against their own values.

“Also, they’ve had this whole private bullying program behind the scenes where they ring people and try and scare them off a story with I think insulting threats they’ve put out on people to try and scare them off a story and everyone has been taken aback, because once you label something in this game, it tends to stick.”

Anasta went onto say that skipper Cam Murray has been a victim of the lack of leadership from the club’s higher-ups, who have enabled poor behaviour on and off the field from certain players.

“He’s (Murray) has been let down. Even if they’re is an incident with players that we all know is wrong … poor Cam Murray has to stand there, and we know he doesn’t stand for what’s going on and off the field with some of those players, but he has to stand there and try and defend the players because Blake Solly and the rest of them aren’t doing it,” Anasta said.

“They’re enabling it so poor Cam, who I believe is a great leader and the heartbeat of that club, has been caught up in it.

“He’s not being the leader he should be because he’s trying to defend players that he knows aren’t acting the way they should on and off the field.

“And defend behaviours too that the club is allowing players to get away with,” Kent added.

Originally published as ‘Top down to bottom’: South Sydney blame game explodes

Read related topics:Sydney

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