Legends pile on Seibold: ‘No excuses this year’
Former Brisbane captain Gorden Tallis has turned up the heat on Anthony Seibold and his playing group ahead of the 2020 season, saying there are no excuses for them not to make the top four.
It comes after coaching icon Phil Gould tipped Brisbane to fail in their 2020 campaign after leaving them out of his predicted top eight.
NRL greats have applied the pressure on Brisbane ahead of the season opener next month as the powerhouse club looks to end their longest premiership-winning drought in Red Hill history.
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Tallis was part of three premiership-winning Brisbane sides during his playing career and was last year inducted into the NRL Australian Hall of Fame.
Speaking at Tuesday's Fox League launch, Tallis said there were no excuses why Seibold couldn't lead the side to a 2020 NRL grand final with a roster boasting the likes of David Fifita, Payne Haas and Brodie Croft.
The Broncos have not won a title since 2006 and Tallis says it's not good enough for the code's richest club.
"Last year, Seibold didn't get the full pre-season because him and Wayne (Bennett) swapped so I get all that," Tallis said. "But now he's had the full pre-season so there's no excuses this year.
"Absolutely the pressure is on them (to win it this year).
"The Broncos are a big brand. They've got a $30 million facility. They've got big crowds. They talk about their rich history, and they win competitions. This year, there's going to be more of spotlight on Brisbane."
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Former premiership winners Cooper Cronk and Michael Ennis also called on the Broncos to improve from their 2019 season.
"Anthony Seibold was in a predicament last year with his halves," Cronk said.
"The biggest challenge for the Broncos in 2020 is to put all that talent, skill and individual ability together and row in the same direction."
Ennis slammed Seibold for talking "overcoached statistical rubbish" after Brisbane's 38-6 loss to South Sydney last season.
"Anthony is one of the modern coaches in the game, one of the younger ones coming through," Ennis said.
"He is intelligent and has a lot of information he relies upon.
"He talks a lot about percentages on ball control and tackle efficiencies, all these sorts of things and that's great as a coach but in terms of people sitting at home watching the team, they want to see performance and they want elite performance.
"They demand success. They had some terrific moments last year and they made the finals, but in terms of where they can be with the roster they've got, they should be pushing for the top four."
Broncos coach Anthony Seibold said the club had put last year's finals disaster in the past and was confident they could bounce back this season.
"I've put that to bed, we've moved on," he said.
"There's no doubt last year was a challenging year for everyone at the club.
"Any time there is that much change in a short period of time … we changed the coach, there was a change of systems, there were a number of changes in our playing group and that creates instability.
"One thing we are working hard on is building greater connections and building cohesion within our group.
"The squad is in a really good place at the moment, everyone is working hard, I find peace of mind putting changes in place and implementing a really well-planned pre-season."