The Warriors have emerged as a genuine NRL premiership threat after forcing their way into the top four for the first time in four years, their round 19 opponents Sydney Roosters believe.
After Sunday’s thrilling win over Melbourne, the Warriors are back in the top four for the first time since round 24, 2011, the last year they played in the grand final.
The sides meet at Allianz Stadium on Sunday just five weeks after a Roosters outfit depleted by State of Origin commitments accounted for the Warriors in Auckland.
But with Shaun Johnson leading the way, they have grown in confidence since then winning three straight to declare their title aspirations.
“From the weekend’s game they really dominated Melbourne, they used to struggle at the end of the game, to see them come good in the clutch is a sign of how they are going,” Roosters prop Dylan Napa said on Monday.
“They are a good team and with Shaun Johnson there anything can happen.
“Everyone knows they have always been a spectacular team, but I think they have shown they have found that consistency that has been lacking at times.
“We only beat them a few weeks ago and they will be keen to repay us for that.”
Like the fourth-placed Warriors, the third-placed Roosters have won seven of their last eight games and are finding form at the right end of the season as they push for a third successive minor premiership.
“It’s not something we really need to talk about, but everyone knows you need to find momentum at this time of the year if you want to make a play for the title,” Napa said.