Toovey's final word:
That’s the total number of points the Eels have conceded in their past three outings against Geoff Toovey’s men.
It’s an alarming statistic – conceding on average 43.3 points a game.
However, and despite last week’s dismal performance against the Roosters, Toovey is adamant coach Brad Arthur will have his troops firing.
“I think last week was a bit of a blemish for this year,” Toovey said.
“They started the competition really well. If you look at their first round match against the Warriors, I thought they played some great football, so I’m sure they are concentrating to put in a good performance.
“They’ve got some great systems in place there and I think it was a bit of a hiccup last week. Mind you they were playing a good side.”
With a push to get the game’s biggest spectacles at larger stadiums, Toovey admitted he’d much rather games played at venues similar to Brookvale Oval.
“I’ve got a different opinion to others on that predicament, but I love the suburban grounds, particularly when it’s a full house, or even a half full house, it provides atmosphere and a great spectacle for TV,” Toovey said.
“I’m looking forward to playing at Brookvale. I think we’ll get a good crowd there and a great atmosphere for players of the caliber of the two teams running out there. I think that helps lift the performances of the players on the field.”
A former premiership-winning winger at the club, Will Hopoate returns to Brookvale Oval in hope of dismantling the Sea Eagles’ defensive wall.
Toovey conceded losing Hopoate at the end of 2011 was disappointing, although he expects the 21-year-old to receive a warm homecoming on Sunday.
“I think he will have half his family there, so that’s a good thing. We’re just grateful that we could help develop a player of Hop’s ability,” Toovey said.
“We would have liked him to still be here, he’s a local junior, his father played at the club, so it would have been nice to keep him.”