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Scott Bailey

Horror NRL finals run motivates Gutherson

Parramatta skipper Clint Gutherson (c) is using the Eels' poor NRL finals record as motivation. (Dan Himbrechts/AAP PHOTOS) (AAP)

Clint Gutherson claims Parramatta's past finals failings only serves as motivation, adamant the Eels' second-week curse is not weighing on his players' minds.

Parramatta have failed to make it past the semi-final stage in each of their last four finals visits, dating back to 2017.

The topic has continually been raised by media ahead of Friday night's do-or-die clash with Canberra, with the Eels' season again on the line.

Since 2017 the Eels have been shocked by North Queensland, flogged by Melbourne, blown out of the water by South Sydney and then controversially beaten by Penrith last year.

The situation has constantly put pressure on coach Brad Arthur, who is confident the record does not weigh on his players' minds.

Asked about his feelings over the club's horror run, captain Gutherson said he was well aware of the record and was determined to finally put an end to it.

"I use it as motivation, that personally you know where you've been and you know what you got to do to try and get out of it," Gutherson said.

"We've been here before. A lot of players have been further. But you've just got to go out there, take a week at a time.

"It's do-or-die now. We're back at home. It's going to be a sell out.

"We just have to make sure we go out there and play the style of footy we want to play."

Gutherson said his team were best placed to break the run this year, hitting the finals in better form and yet to lose back-to-back games this season after being beaten by Penrith last week.

"I think (we're better placed)," Gutherson said.

"It's hard. You can't put your finger (on why it's happened). Every game in the finals is different.

"You go to some games and things go your ways, some things don't. It's finals. That's why you love it and that's why you want to be involved in it.

"But we have to be able to turn that luck to our way. It's on us."

Mitchell Moses remains the only player left from the 2017 semi-final loss, with the No.7 cleared to feature on Friday after overcoming a concussion.

"I don't think (there's any demons). If you look at it like that, it can affect your game," Moses said.

"It's a new squad and things like that. New players and players that haven't played in the second week of finals here.

"You've got to move on from those types of things. If you think about it too much it can affect your footy."


2017: North Queendland 24 bt Parramatta 16

2019: Melbourne 32 bt Parramatta 0

2020: South Sydney 38 bt Parramatta 24

2021: Penrith 8 bt Parramatta 6

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