Roosters supremo Nick Politis has a clear message to the club’s cross-town rivals ahead of Friday’s big opener at Allianz Stadium – “It’s our home, not theirs.”
The Rabbitohs are interested in vacating Accor Stadium at Sydney Olympic Park next season and sharing the new $850 million stadium with the Tricolours, according to The Daily Telegraph.
Jason Demetriou’s side were banned from the Allianz Stadium ahead of the grudge match against the Roosters, while Trent Robinson’s men trained there on Tuesday and will have a captain’s run-in on Thursday.
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Speaking on the Rooster podcast, Politis explained that the Tricolors should have special access to the new modern land.
“I’ve heard other people say they want to play because it’s their home,” Politis said.
The main thing is that we have been there since 1928, we started at the old sports ground and then 30 years at the old Allianz Stadium.
“Nobody else played there. We want to go to another club because it’s our home, not theirs.
“Roosters are just people out there. It is our true home and it is very sacred.
The Roosters’ high performance center and football offices are located at Allianz Stadium and Politis made sure to put up a sign reading “Home of the Sydney Roosters” when they signed a 25-year deal.
The Daily Telegraph’s Booth Rothfield said on NRL360: “I think we all know the Roosters are like nobody’s business.
“Their name is on the side of the stadium, it says ‘Home of the Sydney Roosters’.
It wouldn’t be a build for this game if there was no drama and no shots fired.
NRL360 co-host Paul Kent explained the backstory surrounding the “kerfuffle” that saw Souths banned from the ground before the clash.
“The whole kerfuffle about them not being able to train at the stadium, but the back story is that they don’t want to train at the stadium, they just did it to ruffle the feathers of the roster,” Kent said.
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“It was mainly to piss off the chickens.”
Australia’s Brent Reid said: “It’s great Kent, it’s one of the biggest rivalries in rugby league and we have to accept it.
Rothfield questioned whether the stadium drama would have any effect on the outcome of the game.
Kent said barring them from practicing at neutral stadiums won’t hurt a team.
But he believes that the “accumulation” of events in the history of the Rabbitohs and Chickens rivalry will create “hostility”.
“The animosity between these two teams that leads to the superhuman efforts that we see in these games stems from the accumulation of all these incidents,” Kent said.
“They sit there, and they stack up and it becomes real.”
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The Rabbitohs are said to have tried to terminate their contract with the state government and Venues NSW after funding to refurbish Accor Stadium.
“In 2016, we signed a long-term contract with the management of Achor Stadium, based on a significant redevelopment of Achor Stadium, which at the time was a rebuild,” Rabbitohs chief executive Blake Solly said.
“Now that the government has confirmed that Accor Stadium will not be rebuilt, it is our view that we should be able to go to the Allianz Stadium, the government has invested $800 million.
“We are asking for a fair and reasonable outcome for our members and fans.”