Chris Heighington is tackled during the round 10 Wests Tigers V South Sydney Rabbitohs National Rugby League match at the SCG, Sunday 16th May 2010. Digital Image by Robb Cox

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The South Sydney Rabbitohs players have finally met their match in new coach Michael Maguire. From now on, there is no easy way out for the boys from Redfern.

For too long Souths players have walked to their own beat. Maguire is laying down the law at Erskineville Oval and if they don’t shape up, they’ll be shipped out.

It has come to light that Maguire is fining players for taking the easy way out at training.

The Rabbitohs will eventually be a well oiled machine and its all because of Maguire. The Bellamy-esque Maguire is something the Rabbitohs needed.

Maguire has told all his players in no uncertain terms that hard work and professionalism toward the cause is expected. “It doesn’t matter who you are. Michael knows the importance of every player giving their best,” one source close to the club said. “Discipline is such an important part of the game. Maguire means business. He knows the importance of giving your best.

That is the mentality Souths are building”.

The Rabbitohs have twenty premierships to their name in a proud history which dates back to the inception of Australian rugby league in 1908. The club is draped in glory. But since 1989, Souths have only made the playoffs on one occasion.

In this time, they have also picked up four wooden spoons. They have been bad for more than two decades.

Sam Burgess as co-captain is a step in the right direction.

Burgess plays with the fire and passion that many before him simply didn’t have. He is a man that wears his heart on his sleeve and that’s exactly the kind of person Souths need.

Issac Luke could be anything if he stopped to think. Unfortunately, the jury is still out on if he has a brain to start with.

John Sutton ambles around the field so disinterested at times that he makes you want to switch over and watch the Super Rugby. If he has fire inside him, Maguire will find it.

These are things that Rabbitohs fans probably don’t want to hear. But they need to hear it. People that aren’t even Souths fans want to see some passion from the cardinal red and myrtle green.

Don’t these players want the glory the likes of Clive Churchill, John Sattler and Bob McCarthy once had?

Or are they just happy picking up their pay checks? Wearing the same jersey that George Piggins once wore?

All they need to do is sit down and watch some footage of former captain Mario Fenech in the late 1980’s. The man was a dead set lunatic on the field. But he gave his guts for the Rabbitohs every time he stepped onto the paddock.

He still gives his guts for them whenever he is required.

But until the Rabbitohs start playing in the semi-finals on a regular basis, people will continue to hate.

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