Parramatta Eels captain Clint Gutherson is adamant that the club's premiership window hasn't closed following the departure of a number of stars including Reed Mahoney and Isaiah Papali'i and contract uncertainty over halves Mitchell Moses and Dylan Brown.
The club has lost a wealth of experience and could soon be without more, but Gutherson strongly believes coach Brad Arthur will prepare a team capable of another premiership tilt.
“I think our premiership window has been ‘closed' for the last 15 years,” Gutherson told Channel 9.
“We don't really pay much attention to what other people say. We trust that the club and Brad and the staff are putting the squad together that they think can win it.”
After the heartbreak of the season just passed, Gutherson admits he hasn't watched the 2022 Grand Final defeat, but the disappointing loss will be driving he and the rest of the Eels' squad to go one step further in 2023.
“I still haven't watched it back, and probably won't to be honest,” Gutherson said.
“It just motivates you more.”
While Mahoney is a big loss for the club, Gutherson also spoke about his excitement regarding the arrival of veteran dummy-half Josh Hodgson from Canberra.
The 138-game veteran brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to the role, and Gutherson has tipped him to make a big impact fast.
“He was one of the best hookers of the past 15 years and he's played for his country.
“He's been to grand finals, he's lost a grand final and he's still got that burning desire to try and get there again and try and win.”