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Honor James

MCDONNELL: HULL FC CAN BE A REAL FORCE IN 2013

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Hull FC have a squad capable of being a Super League force to be reckoned with next season according to Shannon McDonnell, the club’s latest signing for 2013.

The talented former Hull KR full back today became the Black and Whites’ seventh new recruit for Super League XVIII having penned a two-year contract that will see him reunite with ex-Rovers teammates Liam Watts and Ben Galea at the KC Stadium.

And following the likes of England international Gareth Ellis and Australian half back Daniel Holdsworth in committing his future to the club, McDonnell says there is no reason why the Airlie Birds can’t target Super League and Challenge Cup honours in 2013.

“If you don’t go into the comp thinking along those lines, then you’re in the wrong game and you’re not going to perform to your best,” the 25-year-old told www.hullfc.com.

“It’s early days at the moment but with the squad that’s coming together here, I think we’ll be a real force in the competition next season. We’ve got some strong backs and some big forwards who love to offload, and with Holdsworth coming in too, I’m sure he will lead the team around really well.

“He’s just had a really good year with Salford and I know a lot about him from the NRL too, so it’s exciting to be playing behind him. Every new signing is a good one though and looking across the team, I don’t see any weak positions. We have quality across the park.

“Pete (Gentle) is a really smart coach too, he is very personable with his players from what I found in the past and he gets the best out of each individual. I’m really confident we can have a successful year.”

A former New South Wales under-19s representative and ex-Australian Junior Kangaroo, McDonnell earned a call-up to the Exiles team that took on England in the International Origin series earlier this year following an impressive debut season in Super League.

A close family friend of Gentle having worked together at Wests Tigers, he arrives at the KC Stadium following a 2012 campaign that captured interest from a number of NRL and Super League clubs.

And describing himself as an attacking full back, McDonnell says one reason for coming to the KC Stadium was the style of play his former junior mentor and now Hull FC head coach had introduced at the KC Stadium.

“One thing that is very important to me is consistency, but I like to play with a bit of flair to my game too. I love to be an attacking full back and I’m sure our forwards will make my job so much easier,” he said.

“I like to support the play around the ruck and we have some outstanding forwards here who love to offload. I’m looking forward to working with them when I get back for pre-season training and hopefully I can start to build some combinations.”

Yet while striking up an understanding with his new teammates is one of McDonnell’s major aims during his first pre-season with the club, the former Newcastle Knights player also insists he has a fight on his hands just to get in the Hull side in Super League XVIII.

And with a pre-season friendly against former club Hull KR already pencilled in for January, McDonnell says he will have to stake an early claim for the full back position.

“Competition for every spot is a good problem to have, especially for the coaching staff, and I know Richard Horne could be one of the players I’m up against for a place in the team,” he said.

“Horney is a great player, he’s proved his worth at the club for years and I’ll have to play well in the friendlies to earn my spot. As for the KR fixture, it will certainly be interesting but I know what to expect from the Rovers boys and I’ll just focus on my own game.”

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We'll see.

For all Hull are assembling a good squad, they've not played together as a team yet and don't all know each other's games and style of play.

Think we'll go reasonably well but will still struggle against the likes of Wigan, Saints and Wire. (Oh, and Leeds when the play offs start :rolleyes: )

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Lets hope the fixture list is favourable at the start of the season.

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We'll see.

For all Hull are assembling a good squad, they've not played together as a team yet and don't all know each other's games and style of play.

Think we'll go reasonably well but will still struggle against the likes of Wigan, Saints and Wire. (Oh, and Leeds when the play offs start :rolleyes: )

McDonnell was on £60k at Rovers £130k at Hull. Still the same player though.

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New signing bigs up his new club as they are paying him more money than his previous club.This is a nothing piece of news

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McDonnell was on £60k at Rovers £130k at Hull. Still the same player though.

Why on earth have you quoted my post when posting your bitter reply?

And how do you know his earnings? Actually, I'd quite like to know what all Hull FC players are on. And Hull KR players, in fact let's not stop there, please list the salaries of every player in SL.

After all, with your extensive knowledge about players' earnings, you might as well share it.

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McDonnell was on £60k at Rovers £130k at Hull. Still the same player though.

So 12% or thereabouts spent on one player - bolloxs!!

Maybe an Ellis or Prince year one of his contract - but McDonnell..... ######

Or like OF - please advise some more salaries!

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