NSW Blues have belief to end Qld's long run: Goldthorpe
FORMER New South Wales halfback Noel Goldthorpe reckons the Blues have finally shrugged off the self-doubt which he says held them back for years.
But the Noosa Pirates coach also suggested the side's newfound confidence would be put to a severe test in game two at Suncorp Stadium next week.
The Blues won game one in Sydney 14-6 and Goldthorpe was buoyed by the manner in which the team did it.
"Over the last few years I think New South Wales have had that doubt in their mind but they looked like a totally different team (in game one)," he said.
"I don't think there was any fear of Queensland ... like they made a pact to each other that they were going to go out hard as they could.
"They did that and for one of the first times I don't think Queensland coped with it.
"The Blues were way too strong in the first game but Queenslanders grow another leg when they get back to Suncorp," he said.
Goldthorpe expected the Maroons pack to lift its intensity.
"Their forwards were beaten in game one.
"That's why we didn't see the likes of (Greg) Inglis and (Billy) Slater and (Johnathan) Thurston.
"They couldn't shine because their forwards didn't really make much ground.
"But I reckon (coach) Mal Meninga will challenge a lot of his forwards to come up with a much better performance.
And he believes the hosts will be fired up after Blues captain Paul Gallen punched Maroons workman Nate Myles during game one.
"There will be a fair bit of feeling there," he said.
"I was expecting the old cattle dog (cry) would be on again but now the NRL have come out and said if anyone punches anyone there will be 10 minutes in the bin.
"(Still) I'm sure Gallen will cop a nice reception when he arrives."
Goldthorpe himself is still sidelined after being king-hit in a local match in April. Mitch McMahon was suspended until January.
"There's a difference between looking at someone and punching them and hitting someone when they're not looking," he said.
"The one that happened to me is totally unacceptable but the other one..... well a bit of biffo here and there, no one usually gets hurt in that stuff.
"But at the same time we don't want to portray our game as thuggery and something that's not a good sight for the kids so maybe 10 minutes in the bin would be fine depending on the incident."
Goldthorpe, 43, said he might pull on the boots again.
"My neck is slowly recovering, so things are getting somewhere back to normal and I'm feeling a lot better," he said.
The Queensland line-up will be revealed today.