Embarrassed and under-fire, South Sydney have vowed to fix an attitude issue when they face NRL benchmarks Brisbane on Friday.
Humbled 44-18 by title holders North Queensland on Saturday, the Rabbitohs were accused of “not having a go” by Queensland great Gorden Tallis, who savaged them for having a soft underbelly.
Second-rower Paul Carter admitted on Tuesday the players had been forced to take a good, hard look at themselves.
“Attitude is a big thing in rugby league and it’s a big part of winning,” Carter said.
“That’s something we’ve tried to address. Aggression comes with attitude.
“If your attitude is there then so is your aggression and we’re going to bring that this weekend against Brisbane.”
Friday’s clash at Suncorp Stadium shapes as a litmus test for Michael Maguire’s side who are staring down the barrel of three straight losses.
While the Rabbitohs are still in touch in eighth at 3-4, they could find themselves as low as 14th at the season quarter-way mark with another heavy loss and if results run against them this weekend.
Talked up after big defeats of Sydney Roosters and Newcastle over the first two rounds, they have now lost four of their last five.
Fullback and skipper Greg Inglis’ quiet start to the year has raised questions while the return of halfback Adam Reynolds from injury failed to spark their attack against the Cowboys.
Centre Hymel Hunt said criticism of the side was deserved after their reality check from the premiers.
“We set our standards high and last week wasn’t up to our standards,” Hunt said.