McLean backs Cowboys to hit new level
NO-NONSENSE front-rower Jordan McLean admitted the Cowboys' engine room will need to go to another level as they feel the "massive" loss of Josh McGuire this week.
McGuire, who has been one of the Cowboys' best since signing from the Broncos in the off-season, was ruled out for up to three weeks after he sustained a calf strain in the win over Gold Coast last week.
With a tough challenge against a rampaging Rabbitohs forward pack ahead of them this weekend, McLean and his pack teammates will need to be at their best.
"He is obviously disappointed, you never want to get injured but he will work hard and be back soon," McLean said.
"He has definitely been very consistent this year so far, (it's) a lot of workload that he does playing backrow and in the middle.
"We are definitely going to have to lift our game around his position.
"I am not too sure who is getting a chance this week but hopefully they will be ready when they get their shot."
The Cowboys are coming off a dogged win over a depleted Titans outfit on Friday night, but will need to be better in the clash against South Sydney which will be the last game of the NRL's inaugural Magic Round at Suncorp Stadium.
The 27-year-old prop was one of the Cowboys best in last week's win pumping out 137m from his 14 carries with 40 of those coming post contact. He also made 34 tackles, equalling his second biggest output in defence this season.
But he said there was still improvements to be made and the club had targeted a few key areas, with the long turnaround between games allowing them extra time to iron out the kinks.
"We just need to work on the improvements, there is always things you need to improve win or lose," McLean said.
"I suppose we had a few errors and a few defensive (misreads) last week, we are just working on those areas.
"We are working hard this week and we will go there with the right attitude and give it a red hot crack."
While it will be an imposing prospect facing an in-form Rabbitohs team rolling off the back of a dominant performance against Brisbane last week, McLean had a simple plan for winning the clash.
"I think they have got a pretty all-round team there at the moment," he said. "A lot of people are playing good football, Cody Walker is on fire at the moment. I think the whole team is going to (need to) step right up this week.
"(We need to) put the ball over the line more times than them, I think that's what you have got to do."