2021 NRL Grand Final - Panthers v Rabbitohs
BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA - OCTOBER 03: The Panthers celebrate with the NRL Premiership Trophy after victory in the 2021 NRL Grand Final match between the Penrith Panthers and the South Sydney Rabbitohs at Suncorp Stadium on October 03, 2021, in Brisbane, Australia. (Photo by Chris Hyde/Getty Images)

The NRL have reportedly asked the Penrith Panthers for a "please explain" over their grand final celebrations.

While the NRL were at pains to express the Panthers haven't broken any rules, they privately are believed to be unimpressed with some of Penrith's celebrations which have made it into social media.

From the grand final trophy having the figurines of Norm Provan and Arthur Summons broken and laid in a pram, to Tyrone May's social media post and Viliame Kikau mocking the "Glory Glory to South Sydney" theme song in an Instagram story, the Panthers have spent plenty of time in the headlines over the last fortnight.

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - JULY 02: Viliame Kikau of the Panthers offloads the ball to Apisai Koroisau of the Panthers during the round 16 NRL match between the Penrith Panthers and the Parramatta Eels at BlueBet Stadium on July 02, 2021, in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

It came following their winning grand final performance over the South Sydney Rabbitohs. A tight game, it brought the curtain down on a two-year build up for the Panthers which included losing the 2020 decider to the Melbourne Storm, followed by the relocation of the competition in 2021 and a minor second half of the season form slump.

They then lost the opening week of the finals against the Rabbitohs, before fighting back in three back to back to back close games against the Parramatta Eels, Storm and Rabbitohs to take out the premiership. The emotion and celebrations which followed have barely stopped.

The Sydney Morning Herald are reporting the NRL have had enough though, and are also close to completing their investigation into the trophy damage.

NRL CEO Andrew Abdo told the publication that there were learnings to be taken out of the celebrations about how the game should be positioned.

“There are two things here; one is if your actions are a clear breach of the rules or not in line with the standards, regardless of whether that is on social media or not. We need to deal with that,” Abdo told the publication.

“The second is how that gets played out publicly. Even if people are not breaking the rules necessarily, but are posting information that is offensive to some people or can be perceived to be offensive or disrespectful to some people, that’s not good for us from an inclusion perspective, that’s not good for us from a brand and reputational perspective.

2020 State of Origin Media Opportunity
SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - OCTOBER 27: NRL CEO Andrew Abdo speaks to the media during a State of Origin media opportunity at Pullman Quay Grand Sydney Harbour on October 27, 2020 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images)

“There are two elements; have they broke the rules and have they caused damage to the game more broadly?

“Even if we don’t take action on every matter, I think there’s a learning and an opportunity to work with everyone, players and clubs and the game on how we want to position the game, what we think is the right way for that to be positioned on social media and other platforms.

We have spoken to the club.

“That’s part of the data-gathering process, part of our investigation. I’m not going to say what we have spoken about, but of course we speak to the club and the players involved.

“But any time we’re in the news for the wrong reasons is disappointing for us. Some of the actions are disappointing, we now need to determine whether they are a breach of the rules. If they are, we will take appropriate action."

The majority of the Panthers' squad is now back in Sydney, with Nathan Cleary having shoulder surgery on Wednesday ahead of his long period on the sidelines.