South Sydney players say they don't feel sorry for their struggling former coach Anthony Seibold as they prepare for Friday night's NRL match against Brisbane.
The pressure is continuing to mount on Seibold in Queensland, with the Broncos in a desperate battle to avoid their first wooden spoon.
The fallout from the highly-publicised coaching swap between Souths and Brisbane from the end of 2018 has also shown no signs of letting up.
Wayne Bennett didn't miss his shot at the Broncos earlier this year, denying he left the club in a poor state when he was replaced by Seibold despite the veteran coach having a year to run on his contract.
Souths prop Tom Burgess said on Monday he still held Seibold in high regard but said he didn't feel sympathy for his former mentor.
"I don't want to say I feel sorry for him. Because it's his job and he is handling it the way he is," Burgess said.
"He's got to get on with it. It's the business we are in, win or lose.
"He's handled himself well, he's just got to keep going with it.
"I wish him all the best.
"I always got along with Seibs, but I don't want to say I feel sorry for him, because that indicates that he needs that support.
"He just needs to keep going with it and not lose faith."
Tevita Tatola insisted it would be the furthest thing from his mind on Friday, after Seibold handed him his NRL debut in 2018.
"I haven't been looking at what's going on up there," the Souths prop said.
"Obviously not winning doesn't help. I'm sure he can get himself out of it.
"All I can do is just focus on Souths."
Souths are hoping halfback Adam Reynolds will recover from a shoulder injury in time for the ANZ Stadium clash.
But they enter on high alert.
They were beaten 22-18 by the Broncos before the COVID shutdown, in a performance Brisbane have not matched in their eight losses from nine games since the resumption.
"There's no denying they've got a great team," Burgess said.
"They've just struggled for confidence. It's something that can be brought back pretty easily.
"There's not a chance we will take them lightly."
Australian Associated Press