Rabbitohs wary of Titans' Roberts

Souths are wary of former Rabbitohs ace James Roberts in their NRL clash with the Gold Coast. (AAP)

Souths are wary of former Rabbitohs ace James Roberts returning to torment the club in Monday night's NRL clash with the Gold Coast.

Two years after showing him the door, South Sydney fear tryscoring sensation James Roberts could return to bite them on Monday night.

Roberts will line up in the centres for Gold Coast at ANZ Stadium after being handed an NRL lifeline by the Titans following a succession of alcohol-related incidents that threatened to end the youngster's NRL career before it really began.

Released by the Rabbitohs in 2012, the talented nephew of former St George Illawarra, Sydney Roosters and Penrith star Amos Roberts also had his Panthers contract torn up this year after smashing a taxi window.

Now the Titans have given the 21-year-old one last chance - and the Rabbitohs know from experience the classy three-quarter has the game to take advantage of his good fortune.

After scoring a try on debut for the Rabbits in 2011, he repeated the feat at Penrith and then bagged a spectacular hat-trick in the Panthers' Holden Cup grand final triumph last year.

"James has had some off-field issues. If he can overcome them, he can do anything in the game. He's a real talent," said Souths captain John Sutton.

"I played with him here. He's fast, he's strong, he can score a try and he's been playing well for them since he got a start.

"We'll definitely have to look out for him."

Rabbitohs playmaker Adam Reynolds said it was sad to see Roberts leave the club.

"He came up in the under-20s and played the last part of the year with us. He scored 10 tries in five games or so. He's definitely a freak," Reynolds said.

"He's got a tremendous amount of talent, he's got a lot of speed and he's strong too. Definitely we're going to have to be on watch with him this week."

Despite suffering six straight defeats to tumble from the top of the table to fourth-last, the Titans are just four points behind fourth-placed Souths.

"They haven't been in the best of form lately so they'll be putting their season on the line and they'll be coming out all fired up," Sutton said.

"It's a real tight competition this year and every win is important, particularly from now on in.

"We have to get back in the winners' circle. We've got the bye next week and we definitely have to get the two points this week."

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