Six-times GF winner Cronk says attitude is key for Eels

Grand final king Cooper Cronk feels Parramatta's 2023 NRL campaign could go one of two ways after the Eels' crushing loss to Penrith in last year's title decider.

The 28-12 defeat, in which they trailed 28-0 until bagging two late consolation tries, will either make or break the Eels.

Cronk, who won a modern-day best six grand finals from nine appearances in season-ending showpieces with Melbourne and the Sydney Roosters, says bouncing back from losing a premiership decider is all about attitude and staying tight as a playing group.

"The thing about losing a grand final is, you need to have a real selfless approach the following year," the retired halfback said at Fox Sports' season launch in Sydney.

"It's quite easy to start pointing the finger and saying 'this was the reason why you did this and you did that'.

"So teams that bounce back from losing a grand final need to be more galvanised than ever before."

Cronk speaks from experience and with authority.

No one since Ron Coote in the 1960s and '70s has won six grand finals.

And each time he featured in grand final defeats, all with Melbourne in 2006, 2008 and 2016, Cronk helped the Storm to victory in the big dance the following year.

The Storm have also never lacked motivation or hunger under master mentor Craig Bellamy.

Cronk says it's hard to predict how Brad Arthur's Eels will back up from last year's grand final heartbreak but knows a harmonious dressing room is key.

"Teams that lose and sort of then don't get anywhere near it (the following season) tend to separate," he said.

"So it's nothing to do with physical performance or skills. It's nothing in their game they probably need to change.

"They need to be galvanised, they need to bond well. They need to maintain obviously the areas they did well last year but go to another level with that and productivity."

Parramatta back-rower Shaun Lane says the Eels haven't been scarred from the 2022 GF loss and is optimistic about closing the gap on the benchmark Panthers.

"That performance from Penrith, I don't think anyone's beating them that night," Lane told AAP.

"Considering how they started the game first half, it was just about flawless from them. Pretty clinical.

"That's what they do and they're renowned for doing: performing close to their best every game.

"So, yeah, I guess if they come out and perform like that, it's going to be very difficult.

"But they're not going to be able to do that every time and that's what's good for us and the rest of the competition trying to catch up."