South Sydney stars Damien Cook and Adam Reynolds have hit back at former coach Anthony Seibold after his comments declared the Bunnies more predictable under Wayne Bennett than during his Redfern tenure.
Seibold lit the fuse for a mouth-watering NRL clash with Brisbane on Friday when he said that the Rabbitohs were still playing a similar style of football to what they were last year.
While he praised the Rabbitohs as possessing plenty of attacking strike, he also said: "I've got a good feel for how they play their footy.
"Not a lot has changed from an attacking point of view that I can see from last year. They will throw plenty at you."
The comments were seen as an attempt to get in the heads of the Rabbitohs playing squad as Seibold faces his former side for the second time since his coaching swap with Bennett at the end of last year.
Halfback Reynolds took a dim view of Seibold's suggestion that they hadn't evolved under Bennett in 2019.
"We've changed a fair bit, I'd say," Reynolds said.
"We're playing a different style of football. That's his judgement.
"Hopefully they game plan us as if we're playing last year's game plan.
"I don't know if it's mind games or if he genuinely thinks we're playing the same type of football."
Tempers frayed and relationships were broken after Bennett was told he wouldn't have his contract renewed by the Broncos last year, eventually prompting him to be sacked by the club and Seibold brought in.
Earlier in the year he walked out of a press conference when he was quizzed on whether there was bad blood between him and the Rabbitohs.
Souths hooker Cook suggested that the Rabbitohs were reliant on their left-side attack under Seibold last year.
He said that it came to the fore in their preliminary final loss to the Sydney Roosters - which ended their season - and the eventual premiers picked apart their game plan.
But he said their attack had added dimensions this year thanks to Bennett's guidance.
"I think we have (evolved), I think where we got in trouble last year, the Roosters game, the last one of the season, coming up against a great side, they knew exactly what our game plan was and they picked us off," Cook said.
"We were very left-side dominant - play the right side and then play back to the left.
"This year, we're playing a little bit more around the post area, we've got Reyno calling shapes on one side, Cody (Walker) on the other.
"I feel we've added that plan B to our attack."
Australian Associated Press