Never compound a mistake with another error – it is a footy axiom that is back in vogue these days and one that the Gold Coast Titans need to really take seriously.
Like right now, today.
We Gold Coast footy fans are a pretty resilient bunch, especially when it comes to being cheated on.
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We are used to hearing players say how much they like us – how committed they are to us – right before they walk out the door to a more attractive or wealthier club who can give them things we can’t.
Jarryd Hayne is not the first to do it to us, nor will he be the last, but if the Titans don’t move on quick smart from this breakup and get ahead of the actual real problem the club is facing, then 2018 will have failed before it even started.
As amusing as it is to poke fun at Jarryd Hayne for being the Lucky Starr of Australian sport (google it if you’re under 75!), Titans fans, players and officials need to be laser focused on one single thing.
Exactly who will be playing fullback for the Titans in 14 weeks’ time?
Oh yeh, didn’t I mention that earlier, yeh the Titans have no fullbacks now.
As a long-time fan of the club and close follower of the game, I honestly couldn’t confidently give you a name as ‘yep, that’s the guy, he’s the next fullback right there’.
Sure I get it, it’s frustrating as hell to have been dumped by that guy we kind of all knew would dump us to begin with, but who we hoped was better than what everyone was telling us he was.
But that anger or annoyance is nothing compared to the lasting damage that a mistake at #1 in 2018 will have on the Titans.
With James, Wallace, Arrow, Latu, Proctor in the pack and Mitch Rein being brought in as hooking cover for Peats, the Titans were looking really solid up front.
The footy world is yet to truly appreciate just how good Kane Elgey is, or how good Elgey and young Ash Taylor can be as a halves pairing.
With Hayne at #1 and a new coach on board, 2018 was really looking up.
Not so anymore because, and I really can’t stress this enough, THE TITANS HAVE NO FULLBACK!
This from the club that gave Zillman a seventeen year contract (that cost the club David Mead). Now they have no one behind Hayne?
The Titans prodigious halves pairing may now be able to run their own show outside the shadow of Hayne, but without a talented ball-playing fullback to put the cream on the cake, the Titans risk losing these young guns to clubs that have, um, well, fullbacks.
David Mead, Valentine Holmes, Clinton Gutherson – the list of good fullbacks who are playing on the wing and wanting a regular run in the #1 jersey is long and the Titans need to be moving heaven and earth to get one to Robina asap.
If there is a kid waiting in the wings who the Titans are backing, today is the day to ship him out infront of the cameras and back him in for the 2018 season – the absolute worst thing that can happen is to be confident with ‘3 or 4 guys who can do the job’ and then chop and change all season when things start failing.
As well-intentioned as it was in the beginning, Hayne was an error for the Titans and now that he’s gone, the club can not afford to compound that error with another mistake.