Matt Scott and Johnathan Thurston. North Queensland Cowboys training at 1300 Smiles Stadium. Picture: Alix Sweeney
Matt Scott and Johnathan Thurston. North Queensland Cowboys training at 1300 Smiles Stadium. Picture: Alix Sweeney

Green expects response from lethargic Cowboys

COWBOYS coach Paul Green says the accountability the team has shown for their lethargic display in Melbourne has him confident of an immediate turnaround against Penrith tonight.

Green took aim at his team's attitude and "effort areas" after the 30-14 road loss to Storm, and improving their defensive issues has been a priority.

He has been happy with the response as they look to snap a two-game losing streak against the Panthers.

"I won't know until tomorrow night, but I'd like to think we'd get a reaction after last week. There was a few disappointed heads after the game," Green said.

"That's the pleasing thing, if people are willing to put their hand up and be accountable, you can work with that.

"Blokes are willing to be accountable, and it's myself included there. We need to work a bit harder and once we get a few little things right, we'll be right."

Coen Hess goes over for a try against the Storm.
Coen Hess goes over for a try against the Storm.

Green said the Cowboys lost their hard edge in the last 25 minutes against the Storm after Coen Hess' second try bridged the deficit to 18-14.

"The style of footy on from that point just was an attacking mentality," Green said.

"If we were prepared to defend well and kick to corners and get through our sets, I reckon the result may have been different, but we were looking for something a bit cheap there.

"If we had a bit more of a different mindset and get through our sets and defended on the back of that, it may have been a different game.

"It may not have changed the result but it's been one of our strengths in recent years, we have to get back to that."

Taumalolo, Scott and McLean will pack a punch. (Zak Simmonds)
Taumalolo, Scott and McLean will pack a punch. (Zak Simmonds)

The Cowboys were rated title favourites by many and have won just once in three matches, but Green said he expected some rust early with Matt Scott, Johnathan Thurston and Jordan McLean bolstering the team.

"I said right from the start we've got we've effectively got three new players in the team plus a new guy at fullback (Ben Hampton) which is a key position and Morgo (Michael Morgan) only had his first game back last week," Green said.

"In terms of cohesion it's going to take a little while and I said we wouldn't be (at our best) at the start for that reason.

"The effort areas are where I want to see an improvement, the things about competing are in your control."



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