Richie Barnett on league

Opinion and analysis from former Kiwis captain Richie Barnett

Richie Barnett: Fans want to believe team is as committed as they are

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Photo / Getty Images
Photo / Getty Images

Message to the Warriors: There's no doubt you don't go out to lose or you don't try but there's a perception you don't care as much as the fans.

There's a perception you are disconnected from the disappointment of last weekend and that you were content with the game when you were laughing, smiling and giggling with people who had just humiliated you by 60 points.

You make the fans feel like you don't hurt as much as they do.

The fans are embarrassed, aggrieved. You came across like you were at a wedding, not a funeral at the end of the Penrith game.

If you want the fans to come back to support you and the loyal fans who have been with you for 19 years to believe again, you have to show as much commitment to the jersey as fans do.

The belief is you don't. The belief is you turn up and attend the game, not perform in the game. The belief is you are content to be selected in the jersey but not represent the jersey.

We, the fans, want the love for the jersey back. We, the fans, want to see your commitment to the jersey return and we, the fans, want you to share the first ever premiership for the jersey, for the city, our country.

At the moment, we are feeling like you don't care. Show you care. Show it through commitment, concentration, desire and effort. Show us what we have always believed in New Zealand players - that you try your best, try for the whole game and that you are not just content to attend the game but perform in the game.

Sunday's game against Newcastle is a defining moment in not only your season but also the careers of a number of you. Let's see if your sentiment is real and genuine because now is the right time.

Yours, a disgruntled fan

• I'm disappointed and disgusted people are questioning the leadership, integrity and commitment of Warriors captain Simon Mannering.

He's a never-say-die individual who doesn't shirk from his role as a player and always gives 100 per cent.

Former Warriors lock Micheal Luck said recently he wished he could be there to help Simon because he had the utmost respect for him and hated to see the weight of the world on his shoulders.

Simon is the type of player every player should strive to be like. He's the Warriors captain chosen by the players and management and he's the Kiwis captain chosen by players and management. Are they all wrong?

People should show some respect for a guy who has bled for the jersey.

• It has been a difficult week on so many levels and I was incredibly saddened to learn of the passing of well-known Warriors' fan Terry Baker. He was a terrific friend and husband and, to his lovely wife and beautiful three girls, deep condolences from the Barnett family. He was a generous and honest individual who will be sorely missed.

- NZ Herald

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