NRL western Sydney derby excites the fans

Derby: The Eels celebrate after their 32-16 win in round four. Picture: Getty Images

Derby: The Eels celebrate after their 32-16 win in round four. Picture: Getty Images

PARRAMATTA and Penrith have broken their fair share of unwanted records on the way to their top-four starts to season 2014.

The Eels have managed to shake their poor away record and win on the road.

And the Panthers have finally secured consecutive victories after defeating Canberra and Newcastle in their past two games.

The sides are on track to break a 13-year hoodoo that has fans on the edge of their seats heading into this week's local derby.

On Friday it will be 5039 days since the local rivals met in a finals match.

On that occasion the Nathan Cayless-led Eels eliminated Steve Carter's Panthers 28-10.

On Friday, the third-placed Panthers host the fourth-placed Eels in one of the most anticipated derbies in a decade.

One person who knows about the derby tradition is Panthers co-captain Kevin Kingston.

Kingston played for the blue and gold in their golden run to the 2009 grand final and has been watching his team closely in 2014.

"I actually enjoy watching them play, although there is a a good rivalry between us both," said Kingston, who identified Jarryd Hayne, Chris Sandow and Manu Ma'u as players to watch.

"They're definitely back and looking really good.

"All in all they are playing really well as a team."

Kingston, expected to return this week from a foot injury, said the middle part of the season was crucial for his team as they looked to capitalise on being unaffected by Origin commitments.

They will be looking for revenge after Parramatta dealt them their worst loss of the season in round four.

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