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Rhinos won't panic - McDermott
Leeds coach Brian McDermott insists he is not panicking over his side's position in the bottom half of the Stobart Super League table.
The defending champions go into the second half of the regular season in eighth place following their 31-18 home defeat by St Helens on Monday night. In the post-match press conference, McDermott admitted he was panicking over the situation, amid suggestions that the team will come good in time for the business end of the season.
But the Rhinos boss claimed there was an over-reaction to his comments, and said: "Of course I'm not panicking. It was a rebuke to a statement thrown at me that we've got it covered because of what we did last year. But there's no surprise that journalists focus on and get carried away with one word."
He went on: "We're massively aware of the need to improve. That game in general epitomised what we've been like this season. We did some good stuff and then some stuff that wasn't good enough.
"One thing I don't pull back on is that Saints wanted that game more. In crucial parts of the game, they had people chasing balls and we didn't. That needs to change.
"Nobody in our camp has the philosophy of 'we'll just pick it up when we need to'. Absolutely not."
Leeds produced a late surge to finish fifth at the end of the regular season in 2011 and became the first team to win the Grand Final from outside the top three but McDermott knows he cannot rely on history repeating itself.
He added: "I should have been more eloquent in my point. There is no formula to what happened last year.
"We didn't stay off the gas and say 'right, now is the time to go'. I'd like to know what it is.
"What we had, was two thirds of a season of hard work and testing times. It wasn't pleasant at times and I don't want to go through that again."