Phil Gould has removed the foot from his mouth to graciously commend St Helens on their stunning World Club Challenge win over Penrith. But it hasn't stopped the pile-on from Saints players and fans.
Gould led the army of doubters, giving the English club no chance whatsoever of getting close to the Panthers, the two-time NRL champions. Gus tweeted last week Penrith "should be able to declare by half-time", but that prediction proved well wide of the mark as the rank outsiders pulled off a remarkable 13-12 win at BlueBet Stadium.
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The former Panthers boss, now ensconced at Canterbury, sensed an upset was on the cards after St Helens opened up a 10-0 lead at the break.
He tweeted: “St Helens playing much better to the conditions. Look far more comfortable in the battle. Panther look disjointed and struggling to put plays together.
"Saints' defence is bustling and resilient. Panther needs to improve to get out of this. St Helens in control."
The visitors endured some nervy moment in the second half as Penrith launched a comeback, but held on to claim a famous victory via a Lewis Dodd golden point field point. Gould was quick to acknowledge the enormity of the win.
He wrote: “Well done St Helens. That’s a mighty victory. Beat Panther to the punch early. Defended their lead with pride. Terrific stuff.
"Panther looked clunky but no excuses. They had months to prepare. St Helens too good on the night. Great result for Rugby League."
League fans make Phil Gould eat his words
Saints players took little time to remind Gus of his pre-match jibe, thanking him for providing extra motivation.
Saints prop Alex Walmsley tagged Gould in a tweet, saying "get that into you" while five-eighth Jonny Lomax added "Cba finding the Phil Gould comment to reply. Great team talk."
Gould, to his credit, took the cheeky snipes well, responding to both players and congratulating them on the win. But English fans are not likely to let Gus off anytime soon, taunting the NRL guru.
One Saints supporter wrote: "Now there’s something to declare (at customs) A WORLD CLUB CHAMPIONS TROPHY!!!!! Enjoy the celebrations!!!!"
Another commented: "You're never going to live this one down @PhilGould15. Cricket score my arse."
Pleasure. Well done son. Great win. https://t.co/qL1Oa84k5A
— Phil Gould (@PhilGould15) February 18, 2023
You’re never going to live this one down @PhilGould15 🤣🤣 cricket score my arse
— Liam Staveley (@LiamStavros) February 18, 2023
Phil Gould for motivating us
— Neil Connolly (@neilc5017) February 18, 2023
Another Phil Gould tweet that isn't ageing well! 🤣😂
— Philip Wynn (@Philwynn03) February 18, 2023
Penrith/Phil Gould "we will declare at half time"
St Helens "hold my beer" 🍺
— Rugby Shows🎙️Dockhouse Dave 🏉 (@Dockhouse_Dave) February 18, 2023
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