Tag: AJ Bell Stadium

RED DEVILS IN DEPTH: SALFORD v WIGAN

For the second time in three matches, the Salford Red Devils had the heart-breaking experience of losing by a single point from a late drop-goal.  Indeed, the only difference in this latest denouement was that there was no extra time involved, but the devastation at having the league points snatched from their grasp, minutes from the final whistle, must have been every bit as hard to take for our players as was that Golden Point Quarter-Final loss to Castleford Tigers.

It certainly was for we Salford fans, returning in numbers to the AJ Bell Stadium, after some fourteen months’ absence, but there again, we had not had to spend eighty minutes of intense concentration and physical buffeting which they had had to endure, in an encounter which had seen every single one of them give their all, in the Salford cause.

And how well they measured up to their illustrious opponents.  In similar fashion to the previous outing against St Helens, they were the quicker to settle to their task, and produced yet another magnificent display of defence, which had the visitors attacking flair completely subdued for lengthy periods of the game.

The difference, however, was that the attack, which against the Saints had been quite lacklustre, was a far more potent force, that had the Warriors on the back foot, particularly in the first half.  How confident they looked as they swung the ball along the line, ran the angles, and questioned the visitors’ goal-line defence at every opportunity, forcing them into conceding a first half 6:3 penalty count in the Reds’ favour.

Twice, on the ninth and twenty-fourth minutes they breached the Wigan try line to take the lead, only for their opponents to hit back with tries of their own on eighteen and thirty-three minutes, but thanks to a penalty goal, from the trusty boot of Harvey Livett, the Red Devils left the field at half time with a narrow four-point lead.

Salford’s opening try came as some compensation for Morgan Escare’s earlier disallowed effort owing to an adjudged obstruction from Ryan Lannon’s venturing into the Wigan line.  This time there was nothing to complicate the issue, as Livett got on the end of an offload from an overly ambitious Wigan player.  His thirty-metre sprint to the line saw him ground the ball in almost the same place as Escare had done a mere minute before.

The ever-improving Jack Ormondroyd laid the foundations for the second with a tremendous, forceful run which took him through the Wigan line and into the clear.  Jack Wells was excellent in providing the necessary support to be on hand to take the pass and cross close to the posts.

Good as the Salford performance overall had been to this point, however, errors did start creeping into it.  These succeeded in providing the Warriors with opportunities to put their hosts under pressure of their own.  Their first try came as a result of a set restart after two tackles and the extra plays enabled them to progress the length of the field and use the power of Singleton to force his way over for the first of his two tries.

Probably even more irritating to the coaching staff would have been the second, in which a poor attacking kick into the Warriors’ overcrowded, righthand corner, ricocheted into the arms of winger, Harry Smith, and he took advantage of a momentary lapse of concentration to round the advancing Salford left flank, each of whom appeared not to recognise the danger until he was on his way to getting into the clear.  With the whole field in which to run, Smith cleverly exploited the space to thwart two or three attempts to stop him before putting Farrell over to the left of the posts.

Coming as this did, just over five minutes before the interval, it put the visitors in a much better position to overturn their half time deficit, in the second half, and their penchant for doing so, this season, has been quite widespread as local rivals Leigh Centurions will testify.  Few would have gambled on four points being sufficient cushioning against such a robust outfit as Wigan, and so it proved.

The Reds’ second half performance did not quite match up to that of their first half, and the errors became a little more evident, starting with Ormondroyd losing control of the ball in a tackle in the very first set of the half – not an unknown occurrence this season – but with the considerable improvement, this time, of holding their line intact for the next set.

The balance of possession however started to shift in Wigan’s favour, primarily from an increase in the number of penalties and repeat sets which started to go their way, and the extra defensive work which was consequently thrust upon the Red Devils started to take its toll.  By the later part of the half they were clearly tiring, for let us not forget that there was probably also some residual after-effects from the exertions of the St Helens game, five days earlier.

To compound the situation, the end-of-set options which were taken did not seem to help matters.  Long, high kicks downfield require an energetic determined chase, and, with this becoming increasingly more difficult for them, Hardaker at fullback was put under rather less pressure.  Drilling the ball downfield into touch would, at least, have brought some few seconds respite for them to get some air into their lungs.

Consequently, it was Wigan, only, who, on 63 minutes, were able to cross and draw level, following Livett’s solitary penalty goal, and in the final moments of the half Salford were unable to raise the same degree of energy to pressure Jackson Hastings’s drop-goal that Wigan had put on Escare a few minutes earlier, and the half back promptly slotted the ball between the uprights to take the spoils.

BALLOT FOR WIGAN GAME NOW ON GENERAL SALE

Salford Red Devils are pleased to announce that the Betfred Super League Round 7 home game against Wigan Warriors is now on general sale.

Season ticket holders were given initial priority for access to the game, which sees the return of crowds back at the AJ Bell Stadium following a successful test event – thank you to all those who attended, you’ve made Saturday’s game with crowds possible.

All season ticket holders who entered the ballot should now know if they were successful or not. Any season ticket holders who were not successful, or did not enter the ballot and would like to attend on Saturday, must email – ticketoffice@ajbellstadium.co.uk

It will be an astounding 435 days since we last played in front of you here at the AJ Bell, when, coincidentally, we also faced off against Wigan in what turned out to be an 18-14 comeback win for the Red Devils.

Although we cannot wait to have you back for live rugby, we ask all fans to follow and respect the Code of Conduct, stadium ground regulations and direction from signage and stewards on-site.

In order to create the best atmosphere possible, we will be allocating 400 tickets to the away club in the North Stand. If you are a Salford fan, DO NOT select a ticket in the NORTH STAND AWAY STAND.

HOW DO I BOOK?

1. All our ticketing will be done online digitally

2. Go to www.eticketing.co.uk/salfordreddevils and sign in/create an account

3. (if you do not know if you have an account try “forgot password” and if you have an account you will receive an email to reset your password)

4. Click on Match Tickets at the top of the page and select the game.

5. Choose the stand you wish to purchase in and £best available”. Select the EAST, WEST & SOUTH for home fans. For AWAY fans select NORTH.

6. Please select the number of tickets you require for you and other people in your bubble (max of 6). If you are the lead client you will be responsible for everyone in you bubble and you must inform them of the “code of conduct”.

7. You will get the “best available” for the area you selected. There will be no kiosks in the standing areas of the stadium due to Covid restrictions.

8. Tickets will be sent via email and you will be able to print at home or add them to your Google or Apple Wallet

9. Please follow all the instructions on the ticket including the arrival time.

10. Please bring ID showing your name and date of birth as you may be asked to present it.

If you are having difficulty in doing this or if you are a season ticket holder who has missed the ballot please email ticketoffice@ajbellstadium.co.uk

You can also call 01617861570 and choose option 1 for tickets and if this is not answered leave a message and someone from the ticket office will call you back.

Office hours are Monday – Friday 10am-5pm

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN I GET TO THE STADIUM?

There will be details on your ticket of what time you should arrive and what entrance to use. Different blocks will be given staggered arrival times and we ask you all to enter the turnstiles at the time stated. If you arrive too early, or too late, you may not gain access. There will be a one-way system in operation within the stadium. Please pay attention to signage and direction from stewards. You may be asked to show ID.

WILL I BE ABLE TO GET FOOD AND DRINK?

Unfortunately, kiosks will not be open in the standing areas as food and drink has been prohibited. If you are in a seated area you will be able to get food and drink from the kiosks.

IS IT SAFE TO ATTEND?

Although we cannot wait to have you back, we need to ensure that spectator safety is at the top of our agenda. Therefore, it is imperative that fans read and agree to the Spectator Code of Conduct and respect all rules and guidelines and keep fans safe from potential transmission of COVID -19.

DO I NEED TO HAVE A TEST?

No, you do not need to have a test before coming to the stadium. However, if you feel unwell please DO NOT attend.

CAR PARKING

If you have a season car park pass then that will be accepted. Car parking passes can be applied for in advance online or by contacting the ticket office. On-the-day parking will be available for £8. Parking at the stadium is limited and we ask that you only trave in your bubbles and follow guidance. For all information on travelling to the stadium, see here.

Once again, Salford Red Devils would like to thank you all for your continued support and we simply cannot wait to see you all coming through our gates on Saturday!

“RETURN TO CROWDS” TEST EVENT BALLOT NOW ON GENERAL SALE

Salford Red Devils are pleased to announce that the ballot for our “return to crowds” test event, due to take place on Wednesday 19th May, is now on general sale.

Season ticket holders were given initial priority for access to the test event, which is being held as part of the AJ Bell Stadium’s “Return to crowds” campaign, which will show the Safety Advisory Group that the stadium and club have taken all the necessary measures in reducing the risk of transmission, of covid, at spectator events.

The club have recently had match days signed off for the return of fans pending a successful test event, so it is vital that you follow the rules and advice laid out in the Code of Conduct, stadium ground regulations and direction from signage and stewards on-site.

The test event will commence at 6pm, with some pre-match entertainment from the first team who will be carrying out some light training and a skills session. After a short break, Salford RL Development Academy face off against Wales RL Development Academy in a 60-minute game.

See below the itinerary for the test event:

WHAT?

  • 6pm – Welcome to your Salford Red Devils 2021 Squad, welcomed onto the field by club chairman Paul King
  • 6:30pm – Break
  • 6:45pm – Salford RL Development Academy v Wales RL Development Academy, 30 mins each way with evening concluding at 7:55pm.
  • Club cheerleading team “The Red Angels” are back for the interval entertainment.

 

WHAT’S THE PRICE?

This event will be free to attend but booking fees may apply.

HOW DO I BOOK?

  1. 1. Go to www.eticketing.co.uk/salfordreddevils and sign in/create an account
  2. (if you do not know if you have an account try “forgot password” and if you have an account you will receive an email to reset your password)
  3. 2. Click on Match Tickets at the top of the page and click on single tickets
  4. 3. Choose Season Ticket Ballot and apply for tickets
  5. 4. Your name will appear. Underneath there is the opportunity to add the other people in your network to your application.
  6. (You must have already added people to your network prior to this and they must also have an online account)
  7. 5. Once you have added everyone to the application you will be asked to choose your area preferences.
  8. 6. Answer the questions at the bottom of the page. If you are not successful in your current location, one of the questions is if you would be willing to sit in another area. If your usual stand is full this will enable us to give you the next best option in order to get you access.
  9. 7. Confirm your application.
  10. 8. You will receive a confirmation email stating what you have applied for
  11. 9. You will be informed by email whether you have been successful and your tickets sent for you to download onto your phone or print the day before the match

 

If you are having difficulty in doing this please email ticketoffice@ajbellstadium.co.uk

You can also call 01617861570 and choose option 1 for tickets and if this is not answered leave a message and someone from the ticket office will call you back.

Office hours are Monday – Friday 10am-5pm

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN THE BALLOT CLOSES?

The ballot closes on Monday 17th at 5pm and all successful applications will be populated into the stadium seating plan. On Tuesday 18th you will receive and email stating whether your application has been successful or not.

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN I GET TO THE STADIUM?

There will be details on your ticket of what time you should arrive and what entrance to use. Different blocks will be given staggered arrival times and we ask you all to enter the turnstiles at the time stated. If you arrive too early, or too late, you may not gain access. There will be a one-way system in operation within the stadium. Please pay attention to signage and direction from stewards.

WILL I BE ABLE TO GET FOOD AND DRINK?

Kiosks will not be open for the test event but you will be allowed to bring in non-alcoholic drinks and food, providing it is in a clear plastic bag. All litter and waste must be disposed of in the bins provided.

IS IT SAFE TO ATTEND?

Although we cannot wait to have you back, we need to ensure that spectator safety is at the top of our agenda. Therefore, it is imperative that fans read and agree to the Spectator Code of Conduct and respect all rules and guidelines, in order for us to satisfy the Safety Awareness Group’s criteria and keep fans safe from potential transmission of COVID -19.

CAR PARKING

If you have a season car park pass then that will be accepted. Free event car parking passes can be applied for in advance online or by contacting the ticket office. On-the-day parking will be available for £5, which will be donated to the Salford Red Devils Foundation.

For normal matchdays parking will be £8 per vehicle. For information on travelling to the stadium, see here.

Once again, Salford Red Devils would like to thank you all for your continued support and we simply cannot wait to see you all coming through our gates very soon!

Red Devils’ Rising Stars programme returns

 Salford Red Devils are bringing Salford & Greater Manchester together for both boys and girls for the first time! 

In June and July, we are offering development days for both boys and girls from under 12s to under 16s, and it will be the first time both the boys and girls programme is running parallel with each other.

We have targeted specific, non-competitive development themed games which will enable players to develop their skills whilst representing their areas and boroughs in a professional environment.

Ultimately, all players will be representing Salford Red Devils in more development themed games vs Huddersfield giants and Bradford bulls.

All players will receive top level coaching from Salford Red Devils coaches to develop and enhance their individual skill level no matter what ability they are at. All development days will be held at the AJ Bell Stadium on the outside 3G Astroturf.

Speaking on the programme, Salford Red Devils head of youth Danny Barton said: “The rising stars programme is for boys and girls of all levels of ability, with coaching tailored to match their skill.

“It’s a great opportunity to learn rugby league or develop any existing experience and will be just as beneficial to Salford Red Devils as the programme can only strengthen our youth setup.

“It’s also an opportunity to develop as a player and person, experiencing different environments that can be challenging and fun.”

Red Devils hooker Connor Aspey came through the programme, and said: “You get some good, quality coaching and meet some great friends.

“If you go down, you’ll pick up the little skills and if you enjoy it you can hopefully try and make rugby league into a career.”

Development days information can be found in the poster attached for both boys and girls.

Confirmed dates for development themed games:

  • -Bradford Bulls HOST Salford Red Devils & Huddersfield Giants / 25th July / Odsal Stadium
  • -Huddersfield Giants HOST Bradford Bulls & Salford Red Devils /8th August / Venue TBC
  • -Salford Red Devils HOST Huddersfield Giants & Bradford Bulls / Sunday 15th August / AJ Bell Stadium

To register your interest in the Rising Stars Programme please email sam.bardsley@salfordcc.ac.uk with the details below

  • Participants Name :
  • Age:
  • School & Year :
  • Community club ( if you don’t play at a community club please answer “N/A” ) :
  • Emergency Contact Name/Number:

*please note Boys u15s & u16s rising stars sessions will be returning as soon as possible every Monday evening in the near future. “

Kevin Brown – “It’s work time”

Despite being 36 years old, Salford Red Devils’ number 7, Kevin Brown, is feeling as sharp as ever.

The halfback is one of the most senior players in the squad, but he won’t let age dictate his condition and his performances.  scoring two tries in last weekend’s win over Leigh Centurions.

Brown said: “My body’s feeling unbelievable.

“I’ve played 5 games now this year, at the age of 36 I’m feeling fantastic and hopefully I’ll build on the form I’ve been performing at.”

Brown is eager to build on his side’s first win of the 2021 Betfred Super League season last week and insists with a fully fit squad, Salford can provideown  plenty of excitement to this year.

“We’ve had quite a few injuries and we’ve not wanted to talk about it,” said Brown.

“But the quality of Danny Addy, Kallum Watkins, Joe Burgess still to come in is something that really excites me.”

Second in command at Salford, Brown has become a leader in the dressing room, on and off the field.

Brown added: “I think my role has been pretty similar for the last 10 years.

“That’s to make everyone else understand the coaches plans on the game plan, really push and understand where they need to be and attack and try and lead by example.

“That’s my role as a player and the vice-captain of the club. Number one is to play well and then closely followed by getting everyone in position and letting them know what the coach wants.”

Salford welcome Castleford Tigers to the A.J Bell stadium this evening, before the two sides face off again next week in the Betfred Challenge Cup Quarter-Final.

“We’ve done some video on them, for me they’re the best attacking side in the competition… they have been for a number of years.”

“It’s work time this week, there’s a lot of work to do. We want to go on a run now and put some back-to-back performances in.”

Due to the social media boycott that Salford Red Devils are in support of, live coverage of tonight’s Round 5 clash with Castleford will not be provided by the club, but will be available on the Betfred Super League website.

Written by: Callum Williams

Consistency is crucial for Marshall in back-to-back Castleford contests

Head coach Richard Marshall is relishing the chance to play Castleford Tigers this Friday at the A.J Bell Stadium.

The Red Devils got their first Betfred Super League win over Leigh Centurions last Friday, but Marshall is now focused on building momentum and consistency.

“A win raises everybody’s spirit but then expectations are lifted as well,” said Marshall.

“We want to be able to back up our performances and build on our efforts. We know the challenge is going to be difficult against Castleford but we’re at home, and we want to build on our home form as well.”

Castleford, who recently appointed Lee Radford as head coach for the 2022 Betfred Super League season, have started the season strongly.

The Tigers sit 4th in the Betfred Super League, winning three out of their first four league games this season.

Castleford’s attack has been particularly impressive, boasting the most tries scored so far this season. Marshall knows his defence will be have to be on top form.

Marshall said: “That would be the main challenge this week.”

“Castleford are a very good attacking team. They’ve got some flair and skills on the edges. Are we able to compete and go against them? Yes, we are.”

Marshall is faced with another selection headache with Matt Costello unavailable and Elijah Taylor still ruled out, but there will be a return to the squad in the shape of Kallum Watkins.

It will also be the first of back-to-back contests with Castleford Tigers, with both teams meeting again in next week’s Betfred Challenge Cup Quarter-Finals. But that won’t have too much bearing on Friday’s game according to Marshall.

“You know a lot more about the opposition but at the level we coach at you watch 3-4 games of opposition every week before a game,” Marshall added.

“It’s a double-edge sword really, they find a little more about you and you find a little more about them. But we’re not a team that wants to change too much. We want to find our own style. Castleford have been working as a team for a long time. They do things in certain ways and there very, very effective, so our defence has to be on this week.”

“A cup game is completely different though. A cup game is a one-off, it’s knockout and it’s a Quarter-Final so we’ll look forward to that but hopefully win this one first and build some momentum into that game.”

Subscribe to RDTV to hear everything Richard Marshall had to say ahead of Round 5.

Image credit: Steve McCormick

Written by: Callum Williams

MATCH REPORT | SALFORD RED DEVILS 34-8 LEIGH CENTURIONS | FRIDAY 23 APRIL 2021

Salford Red Devils marked the return of Betfred Super League action at the AJ Bell Stadium, with a 34-8 victory over neighbours Leigh Centurions.

After trailing early on and going into the break two points behind the visitors, a strong performance in the second forty ensured Richard Marshall secured his first Betfred Super League win at the helm at Salford.

It took only six minutes for the first try of the game and it was Leigh who struck first, Matthew Russell receiving the ball down the left wing and grounding near the corner.

Salford took the lead, however, just over 15 minutes later through James Greenwood, who had only been on the field a matter of minutes in replace of the injured Matt Costello, before he powered over the Leigh line to the left of the sticks.

Leigh responded just before the half-hour mark, again finding success down the left flank and this time it was Iain Thornley who scored for the Centurions.

Half time: Salford Red Devils 6-8 Leigh Centurions

Salford came out looking the livelier outfit in the second forty and Kevin Brown put the Red Devils back in front in the 50th minute, finding a gap in the Leigh line and darting over to the right.

15 minutes later, Krisnan Inu intercepted a Leigh pass and just managed to bat the ball to Sio, who was too quick f0r the Centurions, running almost the length of the field to ground the ball down the right and pick up his third Betfred Super League try in four games.

James Greenwood, who had looked threatening ever since he came on, broke the line in the 70th minute and fed Harvey Livett who, in turn, fed Brown for his second try of the game, this time towards the left of the sticks.

Livett set up his second try in as many minutes, this time feeding Chris Atkin for his first Betfred Super League try of the season.

Livett picked up a try of his own just before the hooter, and just minutes after he saw a try ruled out for obstruction, after some great passing down the left set the number 20 up for his second Betfred Super League try in two consecutive games.

Salford welcome Castleford Tigers to the AJ Bell Stadium in a week’s time, in Round 5 of the Betfred Super League. Sign up to RDTV to hear everything Richard Marshall had to say in tonight’s post-match press conference.

Full time: Salford Red Devils 34-8 Leigh Centurions

Salford Red Devils: Kear, Sio, Inu, Costello, Williams, Lolohea, Brown, Mossop, Patton, Ikahihifo, Livett, Roberts, Wells, Greenwood, Lussick, Atkin, Burke.

Leigh Centurions: Mullen, Russell, Gelling, Thornley, Tierney, Reynolds, Brierley, McCarthy, Hood, Flower, Hellewell, Thompson, Bell, Peats, Ioane, Gerrard, Gee.

Salford tries: Greenwood, Brown, Sio, Brown, Atkin, Livett

Salford goals: Inu (5/6)

Leigh tries: Russell, Thornley

Referee: James Child

Image credit: Steve McCormick

MATCH REPORT | SALFORD RED DEVILS 68-4 WIDNES VIKINGS | SATURDAY 10TH APRIL 2021

Salford Red Devils booked themselves a place in the Betfred Challenge Cup Quarter-Final this afternoon with a dominant 68-4 victory over Widnes Vikings.

In what was Richard Marshall’s first Betfred Challenge Cup game as Salford head coach, the Red Devils responded massively to recent defeats, with debutants Morgan Escare and Matt Costello both picking up two tries each.

It was the Frenchman Escare who opened the scoring at the AJ Bell Stadium in the 13th minute, strolling over after Jack Ormondroyd, today’s Man of the Match, broke the Widnes line to set Escare up.

Costello picked up a debut try of his own five minutes later, scrambling over the line to the left of the sticks to extend Salford’s lead.

The number 24 then scored another in the 22nd minute, opening Widnes up with a dummy pass before darting over the line down the left.

Darcy Lussick came on for Lee Mossop in the 23rd minute to make his debut for the Red Devils, and just over ten minutes later Tui Lolohea added to Salford’s lead.

Welshman Rhys Williams breached the Widnes line with a fantastic run and set up Lolohea who was just fast enough to make it to the line and ground the ball in the 35th minute.

Just before the half-time hooter, Widnes got themselves onto the scoreboard for the first and only time of the afternoon through Daniel Hill down the left flank.

Half-time: Salford Red Devils 24-4 Widnes Vikings

Four minutes into the second forty, Dec Patton scrambled over the line to the left of the posts to score his first try as a Red Devil.

Andy Ackers entered the field four minutes later for Lolohea, and scored a try of his own within the first minute of being on the pitch.

Seb Ikahihifo powered over two minutes before the hour mark for his first try of 2021, the Widnes defence no match for Salford’s number 10.

Kallum Watkins went over in the 64th minute after some quality link-up play with Pauli Pauli, who powered through a handful of Widnes players to set Watkins up to the right of the sticks.

Ormondroyd, who had been a handful all afternoon for the Vikings, broke the Widnes line again in the 73rd minute and this time grounded the ball himself.

Three more tries from Rhys Williams, Morgan Escare and Chris Atkin rounded off what was a spectacular performance for Salford Red Devils, who progress to the Quarter-Final of the Betfred Challenge Cup.

Fulltime: Salford Red Devils 68-4 Widnes Vikings

Salford Red Devils: Escare, Williams, Watkins, Inu, Lolohea, Ormondroyd, Patton, Mossop, Livett, Pauli, Wells, Roberts, Ackers, Lussick, Ikahihifo.

Widnes Vikings: Hill, Cross, Spedding, Roby, Buckley, Craven, Smith, Grady, Else, Jewitt, Tyrer, Lawton, Owens, Lyons, Clough, Tilleke, Wilde.

Salford tries: Escare (2), Costello (2), Lolohea, Patton, Ackers, Ikahihifo, Watkins, Ormondroyd, Williams, Atkin.

Salford goals: Inu (10/12)

Widnes tries: Hill

Referee: Scott Mikalauskas

Image credit: Steve McCormick

ASPEY TO BE LOANED OUT TO NEWCASTLE THUNDER

Young Salford Red Devils hooker Connor Aspey will be loaned out to Betfred Championship new boys Newcastle Thunder on a short-term deal.

The loan is initially to last for two weeks, with the possibility to extend if both clubs agree, and will offer Aspey the chance to develop his game in a different setup.

A product of the academy, the hooker made his Betfred Super League debut in 2020 against Hull KR.

Following on from his debut, Aspey was recently rewarded a one-year contract at Salford after impressing head coach Richard Marshall during a two-month trial funded by the Supporters’ Trust.

Speaking on his loan to Newcastle, the 18-year-old said: “I’m looking forward to having the chance to get some game time and show what I can do.

“It will be a great opportunity to learn and improve as a player.”

Director of Rugby and Operations Ian blease said: “At Salford, we want to ensure that our young players have the opportunity to adapt and develop their game as much as they can and loaning Connor out to Newcastle will give him that chance to see how other players and other coaches do things.

“Speaking with Newcastle’s director of rugby, Denis Betts, this week, we both agree that Connor’s career progression will be assisted by playing for the Thunder and myself and Richard Marshall will be watching closely.”

“There will be a real buzz around the place up at Newcastle as they’re newly promoted, so that buzz is something Aspey can thrive off.”

Season opener promises to be solid test for Marshall’s men

Salford Red Devils head coach Richard Marshall is looking forward to an “exciting time for the club” ahead of the 2021 Betfred Super League opener against St Helens on Friday.

Marshall will take charge of his first competitive game since becoming head coach at the AJ Bell Stadium, with a mouth-watering clash in store against back-to-back champions Saints.

And following a successful pre-season, capped off with a win against 2020 Grand-Finalists Wigan Warriors, the Red Devils boss is pleased with what he has seen from his players.

Marshall said: “I have been welcomed with open arms.

‘There has been a lot of changes at the club, obviously coaches, staff, players. But with change comes freshness, new ideas and invigorated players.

“We have had a wonderful pre-season, getting to know the group, the strengths, the weaknesses, where we can improve as a team and being collaborative in our approach to the game.

“This is a new team, we will probably have six or seven players making their debut for the club on the weekend and it will take time for us to gel as a team – learn each other’s nuances – but at the same time we just want to throw them out there and go against the best team in the country.

“I’m looking forward to improving each and every individual at this club.”

Whilst the Red Devils face a tough task against the reigning champions, Marshall is eagerly anticipating the challenge that lies ahead.

“We want to improve on last year,” stated Marshall.

“We know it will be difficult against St Helens but at the same time it is a challenge we are going to relish.

“Going up against the current champions on Friday is really exciting and we are looking forward to that challenge.”

You can support Marshall and his men in 2021 by purchasing a season ticket HERE, or by phoning the ticket office on 0161 786 1570.

Rewatch our 12-10 victory the last time we played Saints on RDTV.

Written by: Will Dickson