The Courier-Mail

Lodge confident the tide will turn


BRISBANE enforcer Matt Lodge has vented his frustratio­n at the Broncos’ poor form but believes the club still has more talent than this week’s top-of-the-table rival.

The Broncos are 1-4 to start the 2021 season, prompting coach Kevin Walters to drop several star players Anthony Milford and Tesi Niu ahead of Thursday’s clash with Penrith at Suncorp Stadium.

Many of the Brisbane players are down on confidence and form, following wallopings at the hands of Melbourne and South Sydney but Lodge (pictured) was confident the tide would turn at Red Hill.

The Brisbane prop didn’t hold back when asked if the club’s recent form had been frustratin­g.

“Some people don’t understand but it f---s your whole life to be honest,” Lodge said. “It’s been a little bit (frustratin­g) and it’s tough b but we’re still grateful.

“We’re profession­al athletes and we come in here, working hard and the tide is definitely going to turn with this group.

“Once that clicks in some people’s heads and their confidence is on, it’s a different ball game.

“We’ve got kids here that are just as talented, if not more, than that Penrith team.

“One day it’s going to click for them.”

Lodge came up through the ranks at Penrith, playing for the Panthers in the Harold Matthews Cup in 2010 before going on to play in their NYC team in 2012.

He said there was no room for error if the Broncos had any chance of defeating his junior club.

“Our game doesn’t come down to our halves,” he said after news of Milford’s axing.

“They make crucial decisions but we’re going to need 17 on to compete with the best side in the competitio­n.

“They play a good style of footy, backyard footy. I grew up with a lot of those guys and I know them … but we’re going to have to pack our shovels and have a dig because it’s going to be a tough game.”

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