Thursday night games are back for the run to the finals, and naturally enough the Brisbane Broncos feature again. In 2018 they played on Thursday eight times, this year it’s seven.
The Broncos are sitting at the bottom of the ladder, languishing in 14th position.
They have finished in the playoff position 26 times in their 30-year history and if the Broncos are to extend their years spent in the top eight to 27, then the Brisbane team will have to win all of their remaining games.
In 1996 Kerrod Walters, the then Queensland and Australian rake, was cut from the Broncos because of a supposed poor attitude and was blamed by coach Wayne Bennett for a poor performance in the semi-final loss to Cronulla at the Sydney Football Stadium, which eventually ended their season.
This poor attitude and lack of hunger for excellence is not too dissimilar to the current Brisbane Broncos main man Anthony Milford, who has not yet won a premiership with a desperate and successful club like the Brisbane-based side. According to both Paul Kent (chief rugby league writer at The Daily Telegraph and co-host of NRL 360) heard rumours that Benji Marshall was unhappy with Anthony Milford’s work ethic and attitude towards training during his short time at the Broncos.
“He’s a guy that goes in, gets down on the machines in the gym and if you’ve got to do ten and nobody’s watching, he pumps out eight because nobody’s watching,” Kent said. Paul Kent also stated on the NRL 360 program in 2017 that “He’s a guy who enjoys his off-season, he generally comes back and his skin folds give the medical staff a heart attack”.
These statements are worrying for Broncos supporters and the way the club is heading. One million dollars is a large chunk of a salary cap that is 9.7 million every season and this large sum must be used on a player that is a leader on and off the field. The one thing the Broncos are crying out for at the moment, considering that they got rid of such experienced players like Josh McGuire and Korbin Sims along with the retirement of spiritual leader and former Captain Sam Thaiday.
This should be coming from the highest-paid player and role model of the large brand that is the Brisbane Broncos. The same applies to Darius Boyd, the captain of the club. Now I’m not saying that Anthony Milford should get to the standard of future Immortals Johnathan Thurston and Cameron Smith but he should take a page out of their book, hard workers who drove or still drive their side on and off the field. Attitude is such a big word used in context, but this attitude towards training or lack thereof is evident on the field.
Defence is all about attitude and technique has some small bit to play. But as a defender in the line you must want to make tackles. The stats are bleak and show this evidently that Anthony Milford is a “touch footballer”. On average, Anthony Milford makes ten to 12 tackles every game defending at five-eighth in the defensive line and misses around about four tackles per match.
1/3 of tackles missed isn’t too bad compared to other halves. The stat that shows that Anthony Milford’s defensive ways are dire is the number of tackles Alex Glenn makes each game. On average, Alex Glenn makes 32 tackles and Jack Bird and Gehamat Shibasaki both average 16 to 20 tackles per game, which shows that Alex Glenn and his centres do a lot of defending for themselves and defensive shadowing for there five-eighth.
Kevin Walters overlooked Anthony Milford because of his defence and instead picked Moses Mbye who can play multiple decisions and is a much better defender. If the Broncos are bound for success in the near future then Anthony Seibold must change their money man’s attitude towards training and defence or show him the door.