If there is one thing that the Warriors have learnt it is that you can’t buy a winning culture. Over the past few years, they have signed high-profile recruits such as Hoffman, Luke, Tuivasa-Scheck and Foran. The narrative has been that these players are not only skilful but have been part of successful clubs and will help drive a winning culture at the Warriors. Newsflash to management: Bringing in high profile players is not changing the culture.
Last week Ryan Hoffman made the statement that the players had a brutally honest review session and it was one of the best he had been involved in at the club. This begs the question as to what has happened at all the other review sessions? The team has been failing for 5 successive years and we finally have a brutally honest review? Ironically the player who stood up against St George, James Gavet, was probably not even part of the review. Newsflash to Hoffman: We don’t care what the players say, we care what they do on the field.
For too long there has been a lack of accountability for poor player performances. We have heard the pet phrases “we learnt a lot tonight” “we need to better” “defence is attitude” but there hasn’t been a willingness to drop players for an extended period. Every player needs to know they are accountable every week. This accountability needs to be more than tough questions in a team review, it needs to be backed up by the selection axe. If you are cruising we will pick a player with less talent who has the right attitude, because you don’t make this team without giving everything. Newsflash to Kearney: You need to pick on form.
Each time the club mentions that they a recruit will drive our culture it suggests they can see players that do not have the attitude needed for success in the NRL. It is time for the club to learn that your culture is not only affected by who you bring in but by who you allow to remain. Unless things turn around very quickly, then the club will have little choice but to shed large numbers of the current playing group. Newsflash to the players, shape up or pack your bags.