If it’s drama you want, the Parramatta Eels are the team to watch.
Having slumped to the wooden spoon in 2018, the blue and gold bounced back to finish fifth last season and won plenty of fans with their run-and-gun style of play.
Can Parra find some consistency and make an impact in 2020? Let’s look at the latest NRL odds for the Eels.
About the Parramatta Eels
|Home grounds:||ANZ Stadium
|Premierships:||Four – 1981, 1982, 1983, 1986|
|2019 ladder finish:||Fifth (14-10)|
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Updated Parramatta Eels futures odds
|2020 Premiership||Make Finals||Make Top 4||Dally M Odds|
Best Parramatta Eels bets for NRL 2020
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:
- The Eels bounced back in a big way last year, but their ultra-attacking style of play did not hold up in the finals. If they can add a bit more grit and improve their record away from home, they could challenge the likes of the Sydney Roosters and Melbourne Storm in the spring.
- Parra finished on the fringe of the top four last season. This year, most online bookmakers have them as the frontrunners to join Melbourne, Sydney and Canberra in the top quarter of the NRL table. If all goes well, the Eels will be there or thereabouts.
- The exciting Eels have a few genuine contenders in this year’s Dally M Medal betting. Mitchell Moses rans third behind James Tedesco and Cameron Smith in 2019, while Clint Gutherson should pick up plenty of votes if Parra have another good year.
Eels players to watch in 2020
Tim Mannah’s retirement leaves Gutherson as the standalone captain at Parramatta. The gutsy fullback is a fan favourite whose all-action approach typifies the Eels’ style of play.
Parra’s Fijian flyer exploded into NRL footy with a league-high 22 tries in his debut campaign. Sivo got into some trouble over the off-season, so it will be interesting to see what kind of impact he has in 2020.
Corey Norman’s departure proved a blessing for Moses, who was the NRL’s standout halfback last year. A strong start to the 2020 campaign will put the former Tiger in the frame for a State of Origin cap.
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.