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Lee Mossop wants to prove he can cut it in the NRL.

As Sam Burgess plans to farewell the NRL, another English International is preparing to do whatever it takes to succeed here.

Continuing the rich production line of English forwards to make the journey to Australia, Lee Mossop has arrived at the Parramatta Eels in 2014 to commence a three-year deal.

Should Mossop prove a hit in the blue and gold this season, Parramatta fans could do worse than send South Sydney coach Michael Maguire a bouquet of thanks.

It was Maguire, who coached the former Wigan backrower-turned-prop in the English Super League and managed to convince Mossop to put his NRL dream on ice for a few more years.

Mossop had held a pen, ready to sign a lucrative contract with the Canterbury Bulldogs back in 2010, before knocking back the deal at the final hour.

Instead, he stayed with Wigan and Maguire. In his own mind, the 25-year-old also says, he wasn’t ready.

But he is now.

“Madge (Maguire) was one of the main reasons I stayed with Wigan,’’ Mossop said.

“The previous year before that I had a coach (Brian Noble) where no matter how well you were playing, he’d go with the same team and what he knew.

“Then Madge came in and changed the place and me.

“I also still felt like I had a lot still to prove in the English Super League, I hadn’t played for England yet.

“In hindsight it was the right decision to stay.

“I’ve now got two Challenge Cups, two grand final rings, a World Cup jumper for England and a challenge like this for me of playing in the NRL, it’s perfect timing.’’

However, Mossop will have to be patient. Shoulder surgery just prior to Christmas means his NRL debut is scheduled for round 10.

“I’m optimistic about being back before then, which would be a bonus,’’ Mossop said.

What motivates the recently married Pom to churn through hours of rigorous rehabilitation sessions on his shoulder, is the pressure.

Pressure on himself and pressure also, on a Parramatta side scarred by back-to-back wooden spoons.

Like any league lover, Mossop has watched on in awe at the devastating impact that fellow countrymen, including Adrian Morley, Gareth Ellis, James Graham and the Burgess brothers have had on the NRL over the past decade.

But rather shudder under the weight of expectation, Mossop is planning to embrace it.

“Obviously that comes with immediate pressure on me as well because of the success they have had here,’’ Mossop said.

“But it’s also something I enjoy.

“I enjoy the added pressure and I think it’s something that brings out the best in me, so I’m hoping to be as much of a success as those guys.

“But if I’m to do that I know I’ll have to work as hard as they have.

“The challenge is in front of me. There’s a lot of good forward here, especially in the front row, so there’s a lot of competition which again with that pressure, I’m hoping it will bring out the best in me.’’

Mossop’s enthusiasm reflects a mood of optimism that has engulfed an Eels camp intent on climbing back up the NRL ladder in 2014.

Following acquisition of Corey Norman from Brisbane, Nathan Peats from South Sydney and William Hopoate back from a two-year sabbatical, the Eels now believe they have the potency required to ease the load from the shoulders of co-captain and central attacking weapon Jarryd Hayne.

But in reality, if the Eels are to shock their rivals this season and make the finals, they’ll be targeting two key areas; an empty casualty ward and an uplift in consistency from a crop of 50-game-plus players that includes Mitchell Allgood, Darcy Lussick, Ryan Morgan and Joseph Paulo.

via New Eels recruit says he is eager to prove he has what it take to play in the NRL | Rugby League, NRL Scores, NRL Ladder | Fox Sports

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