Dylan Brown in latest Eels captain development as NRL fans react to controversial call

The Eels have made the announcement ahead of the Friday game.

Under siege Eels coach Brad Arthur has made the controversial decision to hand Dylan Brown the co-captaincy this weekend after Clint Gutherson was ruled out for a number of weeks due to injury. The Eels have endured a brutal run in 2024 having just won three of their eight games.

Injuries have piled pressure on Arthur with the players defending the coach after the club failed to make finals footy in 2023. Since the injury to halfback Mitchell Moses, Brown has played in the No.7 jersey as the experience playmaker.

Brad Arthur has made the decision to hand Dylan Brown (pictured) the co-captaincy role for this weekend. (Getty Images)
Brad Arthur has made the decision to hand Dylan Brown (pictured) the co-captaincy role for this weekend. (Getty Images)

However, his performances have been thoroughly underwhelming in the eyes of many fans and they are not convinced he is ready to lead the team. But, in a big move, Arthur has announced Brown will take over as co-captain of the Eels this weekend. He will join Junior Paulo as captain against the Broncos at home.

And Arthur said the 23-year-old is the future of the club and announced his captaincy call at a press conference on Thursday. "It's the same bloke, that does the same thing for us every week, Dylan Brown. He is inspirational in terms of his effort and how he just competes...he just turns up and he is so reliable," Arthur said, before he announced Brown's captaincy news.

Arthur said he hoped the co-captaincy role will give him the belief to go to the next level. The coach said this development will make the Eels a better team.

Fans were left surprised by Parramatta's move. Many feel Brown hasn't stepped up in the absence of Moses, despite Arthur's comments. Others felt the Eels were very short on leaders in the team with Gutherson and Brown out still for a number of weeks.

The move comes as Brown pleaded guilty in June last year to sexually touching a woman's breast without her consent in Sydney. Brown missed a number of games after being stood down by the NRL. Brown has been a mainstay in the team since and appears set to captain them on the weekend.

Dylan Brown passes the ball.
Dylan Brown (pictured) will co-captain the Eels this weekend.

Only last month, Gutherson was full of praise for Brown having taking the reins since Moses went down injured earlier in the year. "Dyl has been doing that (well), he's been one of our better players the last two weeks," Gutherson said.

"He kicked well, he ran the ball and there's probably a handful of other players who've been letting the team down. We know what we have to do to fix it and we have to do that this week.


"I'm there to do what I can do for the team, I don't need to be doing anyone else's job, the other 16 players have got to do their job." Gutherson has since been ruled out for around five weeks after he underwent surgery on his knee. "The Eels co-captain has undergone a minor operation on his knee and will be unavailable for 4-5 weeks," a Parramatta club statement read last week.

The injury comes at a horror time for the Eels who now enter a brutal stretch of NRL fixtures. In the next four weeks, the Eels face Brisbane, Melbourne and Cronulla. All three currently sit in the top eight and have started 2024 in form.