What the hell happened to the Parramatta Eels last season?
The blue and gold started the year among the flag favourites, but a horror start saw them go six rounds without a win en route to the wooden spoon.
Back Parra and their young guns bounce back in 2019? Let’s look at the latest NRL odds for the Eels.
About the Parramatta Eels
|Home ground:||ANZ Stadium|
|Captains:||Tim Mannah and Beau Scott|
|Premierships:||Four – 1981, 1982, 1983, 1986|
|2018 ladder finish:||16th (6-18)|
Best bookmakers for Parramatta Eels betting
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Updated Parramatta Eels futures odds
Top NRL odds for the Eels come courtesy of Sportsbet, where new clients can score up to $501 in bonus bets upon joining. Sign up now for free.
|2018 Premiership||Make Finals||Make Top 4||Dally M Odds||Top Tryscorer Odds|
|Mar||$13||$1.57||$3||C Norman – $21||B French – $13|
|Apr||$26||$3.30||$15||M Moses – $51||B French – $67|
|May||$151||$15||$51||C Norman – $501||B French – $81|
|Jun||$251||$41||$201||C Norman – $501||B French – $151|
|Jul||$251||$41||$201||C Norman – $501||B French – $151|
|Aug||N/A||N/A||N/A||C Norman – $501||N/A|
Best Parramatta Eels bets for NRL 2018
There are dozens of NRL futures markets for Parramatta, but where are they likely to return some real value?
Click on the tabs below to get more analysis on these markets:
- Parra were among the biggest improvers in 2017, winning nine of their last 10 home-and-away games to finish fourth and reach the finals for the first time in eight years. They did so despite Clint Gutherson busting his ACL midway through a breakout season. If they can get their best 13 on the park most weeks, the Eels might go even better in 2018.
- On what we saw last term, Parramatta should make the eight without too much fuss. The question is whether they can maintain their top-four status. The Roosters, the Cowboys and the Storm are all odds-on to secure a double chance in the finals, which leaves four or five very decent teams to fight over one spot. Parra’s prospects are as good as anyone’s.
- Corey Norman is the star man in Parramatta’s back half and will figure prominently in the Dally M reckoning if he stays fit and avoids trouble. Clint Gutherson is also worth a shout, although the former Sea Eagle will miss the early weeks of the season as he works back from injury.
- The Eels missed Bevan French’s electric pace down in the flanks in their finals defeats to Melbourne and North Queensland last year. A career record of 28 tries in 29 games tells you all you need to know about his chances of topping the charts in 2018.
2018 Parramatta Eels draw
|1||Penrith Panthers||Panthers Stadium||Sunday, March 11||4:10pm|
|2||Manly Sea Eagles||Lottoland||Sunday, March 18||4:10pm|
|3||Cronulla Sharks||ANZ Stadium||Saturday, March 24||7:35pm|
|4||Wests Tigers||ANZ Stadium||Monday, April 2||4pm|
|5||Penrith Panthers||ANZ Stadium||Sunday, April 8||4:10pm|
|6||Canberra Raiders||GIO Stadium||Saturday, April 14||7:35pm|
|7||Manly Sea Eagles||ANZ Stadium||Sunday, April 22||2pm|
|8||Wests Tigers||ANZ Stadium||Sunday, April 29||4:10pm|
|9||Cronulla Sharks||Southern Cross Stadium||Saturday, May 5||7:35pm|
|10||Canterbury Bulldogs||ANZ Stadium||Friday, May 11||7:50pm|
|11||New Zealand Warriors||ANZ Stadium||Friday, May 18||6pm|
|12||Brisbane Broncos||Suncorp Stadium||Thursday, May 24||7:50pm|
|13||Newcastle Knights||ANZ Stadium||Saturday, June 2||7:35pm|
|14||North Queensland Cowboys||TIO Stadium||Saturday, June 9||7:30pm|
|15||South Sydney Rabbitohs||ANZ Stadium||Thursday, June 14||7:50pm|
|16||St George Illawarra Dragons||WIN Stadium||Thursday, June 28||7:50pm|
|18||Newcastle Knights||McDonald Jones Stadium||Friday, July 13||7:50pm|
|19||Canterbury Bulldogs||ANZ Stadium||Thursday, July 19||7:50pm|
|20||South Sydney Rabbitohs||ANZ Stadium||Saturday, July 28||5:30pm|
|21||Gold Coast Titans||ANZ Stadium||Saturday, August 4||5:30pm|
|22||St George Illawarra Dragons||ANZ Stadium||Saturday, August 11||7:35pm|
|23||Melbourne Storm||AAMI Park||Friday, August 17||7:50pm|
|24||North Queensland Cowboys||1300SMILES Stadium||Friday, August 24||7:50pm|
|25||Sydney Roosters||ANZ Stadium||Saturday, September 1||7:35pm|
Eels players to watch in 2018
Position: Fullback, centre
The ‘Hayne Plane’ is back in Parra after short stints in the NFL, rugby sevens and the sporting quagmire that is the Gold Coast. He was the reigning Dally M Player of the Year when he left the Eels in 2014, but he returns amid a cloud of questions after a disappointing 2017. The early mail says Hayne will start the season in the centres, with Bevan French lining up at fullback.
Is this the year Norman finally breaks through on the State of Origin stage? With both Cooper Cronk and Johnathan Thurston retiring from rep footy, their eternal understudy has never had a better opportunity to win a cap for Queensland. He just needs to keep doing what he’s been doing on the field and steer clear of bad ideas and influences off it.
Position: Fullback, wing, centre
Parra’s list is such that we could have reeled off five or six must-watch players, but Gutherson might be the most intriguing of the lot. Injury curtailed an outstanding 2017 campaign in which he emerged as one of the most exciting fullbacks in the NRL. His return could trigger a big reshuffle in the back row, where Hayne and French also have designs on the No.1 jersey.
Parramatta Eels records and stats
- Most games: 330 – Nathan Hindmarsh
Most career points: 2001 – Mike Cronin
Most points in a season: 282 – Mick Cronin (1978)
Most career tries: 111 – Luke Burt
Most tries in a season: 24 – Jay Dona (2015)
Most points in a match: 28 – Luke Burt (vs. Panthers, 2002)
- Most consecutive wins: 12 (1964, 1977)
Most consecutive losses: 19 (1959-60)
Biggest winning margin: 74-4 (vs. Sharks, 2003)
Biggest losing margin: 0-68 (vs. Raiders, 1993)
Largest NRL attendance: 104,583 (vs. Dragons at Stadium Australia, 1999)
- The idea of a first-grade club in Parramatta was first floated in the 1930s, but it was not until the end of World War II that the dream became reality. The early years were hard work and the team did not feature in the NSWRL finals until 1962.
Things started to come together in the 1970s, when the Eels played in six consecutive finals series and made back-to-back grand final appearances. In ’76 they suffered a narrow defeat to Manly after Neville Glover’s infamous fumble in the dying moments, and a year later were beaten in a replay by St George.
Those near-misses foreshadowed a golden age for Parra footy. Blessed with a star-studded squad that included Mick Cronin, Steve Ella, Brett Kenny, Ray Price and Peter Sterling, the Eels claimed their first premiership in 1981. They repeated the feat in ’82, did it again in ’83, just missed out in ’84 and returned to the top in ’86. That’s four flags and five grand finals in six years.
Those remain the greatest days in Parramatta’s history. The club has not claimed another premiership since, despite finishing top of the ladder in 2001 and 2005. The Eels were runners-up to the Melbourne Storm in 2009 – one of two flags that were stripped due to salary cap breaches. Parra’s grievances over that injustice were rendered null and void in 2016, when the club was docked premiership points and fined $1 million for cheating the salary system.
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