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Bearman

Salford, a flash in the pan?

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After a magnificent season on the pitch and a big turnout of supporters for both the semi and the final can they kick on from here?

I note on the match thread a lot of neutrals and indeed Saints fans really hope they can.

But, can they? With some of last nights players moving on can they replicate this season's performance?

Watson is clearly an excellent coach but was he a bit lucky in having Hastings to light the blue touch paper for their season?  Hastings moves on to Wigan and who would or could act as talisman for 2020?

As for their supporters, again from comments on the match thread there were some accusations that some of the support might have come from a soccer element. There were comments that there was some inappropriate chanting.

I have long believed that our target audience should be genuine soccer fans. I hope that we can attract more to our sport.

To answer my own questions above. I fear that this season has been a bit of a lucky one off. The stars aligned in Salfords favour. They have to rebuild a new team on a low fan base and budget.

I hope I am wrong.

 


Ron Banks

Bears and Barrow

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12 minutes ago, Bearman said:

After a magnificent season on the pitch and a big turnout of supporters for both the semi and the final can they kick on from here?

I note on the match thread a lot of neutrals and indeed Saints fans really hope they can.

But, can they? With some of last nights players moving on can they replicate this season's performance?

Watson is clearly an excellent coach but was he a bit lucky in having Hastings to light the blue touch paper for their season?  Hastings moves on to Wigan and who would or could act as talisman for 2020?

As for their supporters, again from comments on the match thread there were some accusations that some of the support might have come from a soccer element. There were comments that there was some inappropriate chanting.

I have long believed that our target audience should be genuine soccer fans. I hope that we can attract more to our sport.

To answer my own questions above. I fear that this season has been a bit of a lucky one off. The stars aligned in Salfords favour. They have to rebuild a new team on a low fan base and budget.

I hope I am wrong.

 

I think you are probably right. I agree the stars aligned.

Getting some consistency and making the playoffs regularly would be real progress, and hopefully allow them to win more than they lose and build up their support, finances and platform as a club.

But they should enjoy these moments while they can, as should we all when our clubs get some success.

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It's been a great fairytale for Salford this year. I hope they get a lot more fans off the back of it. However, even a team with a very strong squad would struggle to lose players as key as Hastings (best half in the competition), Jones (Salford's best forward) and Bibby (their best threequarter) all at the same time. And Salford don't have a strong squad, with effectively none of the youth conveyor belt which enables clubs like Saints, Wigan and Leeds to cope with player departures.

Unless they find someone with a big wallet willing to recruit top replacements, next year could be a tricky one for them.
 

 

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Hastings is obviously a huge loss, and a couple of other solid players are moving on too. I agree it'll be hard, but Watson has proven himself a good coach, they also have Sarginson coming in, and a few other players are still improving. Lolohea has it in him to become a top five eighth, it's just getting time in the position - which he only really got for the first time this year. Salford's big problem is along with Saints staying strong (and plenty of young talent coming through), other clubs around them - Warrington, Wigan, Hull - are all looking stronger, Toronto will come in with a good team, Castleford are always thereabouts, and Catalans have strengthened too. It's shaping up as a good comp!

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I genuinely hope they can kick on from here. Can they? I suppose that depends on who they can keep hold of. Ian Watsons stock will have risen considerably. How much of the team can they together, some are already leaving. I hope its not a flash in the pan as it'd be nice to have a new kid on the block challenging for honours. Salford have done fantastically well this season. We'll have to wait and see if they can produce the results next season. 

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19 minutes ago, ghost crayfish said:

they also have Sarginson coming in,

I think they’ll do alright despite this

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If Salford could make the play offs next year, then that would be a brilliant achievement. The loss of Hastings, Bibby and Jones will be significant.

Watson has made a habit of getting the most out of his team against the odds though, so I wouldn't be surprised to see them in or around the play offs again in 2020.


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I agree about their stars aligning this year. It's difficult to see how that will happen again.

They are losing their three best players, without any young talent coming through because they don't have an Academy. They're also unlikely to have such good fortune with injuries again next season.

If they can be mid-table next season, I feel sure they'd be delighted.

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4 hours ago, Bearman said:

I hope I am wrong.

Me too!

 


“Thank you Salford & Eccles and all that was left was hope!”     

 

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For a few years at the start of SL, the Broncos got decent crowds, with some success. The key things there were 1) it felt like an event, 2) the team has characters and 3) the team was competitive. The first is absolutely vital - I have taken many people to matches and pretty much without exception they have been conscious of the size of the crowd. The way for salford to sustain their success is to beg, borrow or steal to get enough fans into the AJ that the casual observer will feel they are watching something worth watching. Our game sells itself once people are in the ground, and most fans won’t expect them to win every week as long as there are characters and they are in the fight. 

I am guessing that you need 5k plus at the AJ to make neutrals feel it is an event. Kidnap people if you need to, market like mad, make it easy to hear about and get to, and you can break the downward spiral. 

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Its probably a case of now or never if Salford want to maintain and sustain there current standing in SL, they simply have to grab this moment to build the club, yes its a huge blow to be losing the likes of Hastings ( massive shoes to fill), Jones and Bibby but the replacements Sarginson (quality), Pauli and Brown (probably seen better days) while not too shabby are hardly ones to set the pulses racing and they probably could do with one or two more genuine quality signings.

Yesterday was an amazing day for the club and it would be a terrible shame if all the good work of this season was to be wasted in the coming months, hopefully this time the people of Salford now vote with their feet and get down to the AJBell and support the club, they actually deserve supporting after the heroics on and off the pitch this season, Salford its got to be said have been a breath of fresh air,  any other team except Saints ( genuinely great side) yesterday and Salford you suspect would have won thats how far they have come as a team, to that end goes massive credit to the coach and backroom staff who have put such an outstanding and hard working team together, lets hope for more of the same next season, a competetive Salford backed by more fans and more days like yesterday!  

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5 hours ago, paulwalker71 said:

I agree about their stars aligning this year. It's difficult to see how that will happen again.

They are losing their three best players, without any young talent coming through because they don't have an Academy. They're also unlikely to have such good fortune with injuries again next season.

If they can be mid-table next season, I feel sure they'd be delighted.

Injuries are probably the key thing. Sarginson is an upgrade on Bibby but Hastings and Jones will be a big loss. Atkin could be a very shrewd signing though and James Greenwood also if he can stay fit

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Hastings is a big loss it will be interesting to see how he does at Wigan. His loss would affect any team even Saints.

Jones will do well at Hull if he has a player offloading to him. Griffin is another leaving I have mixed feelings on him, he is costly, gives away loads of pens or loses the ball but he has an amazing work rate. Bibby is a solid player but not irreplaceable.

Trust in Watson !

 

The key for me is turning some casual supporters into season ticket holders. This will allow the club to spend more money

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Things are looking dodgy at the Bulls. We have a classy young standoff called Rowan Milnes (who's on a part-time contract I think); he would be worth a punt for any Superleague team.


Under Scrutiny by the Right-On Thought Police

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I wonder if we'll ever see a similar late season collapse by so many potential top 5 teams Hull, Wire and Catalans all kindly opened the door for Salford.


This world was never meant for one as beautiful as me.
 
 
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2012 - 2014 "The wasted years"

2013, 2014 & 2015 Official Magic Weekend "Whipping Boys"

2017 - The year the dream disappeared under Grix's left foot.

2018 - The FinniChezz Bromance 

2019 - The Return of the Prodigal Son

 

 

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11 hours ago, Wollo Wollo Wayoo said:

I wonder if we'll ever see a similar late season collapse by so many potential top 5 teams Hull, Wire and Catalans all kindly opened the door for Salford.

I wonder if we will ever see a similar late season winning streak by any any club which result in getting a Grand Final spot?

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1 minute ago, WSRD said:

I wonder if we will ever see a similar late season winning streak by any any club which result in getting a Grand Final spot?

I think Leeds went one better in the past though.


This world was never meant for one as beautiful as me.
 
 
Wakefield Trinity RLFC
2012 - 2014 "The wasted years"

2013, 2014 & 2015 Official Magic Weekend "Whipping Boys"

2017 - The year the dream disappeared under Grix's left foot.

2018 - The FinniChezz Bromance 

2019 - The Return of the Prodigal Son

 

 

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Wigan have improved with French coming this year and with Hastings and Bibby from Salford, which in turn weakens Salford. I think Warrington are going to be as strong, potentially stronger if Widdop stays fit and combines well with Austin. Hull look like they’ve signed well but let’s be honest, Hull are Jekyll & Hyde and who knows what Hull you’ll get from one week to the next. Catalans have signed James Maloney and he’s a superb player but they have to hope he’s not there for a holiday and Catalans can improve their form at home and away. 

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Are there any early indications of improved season ticket sales for Salford as a result of making the Grand Final.

I was at Old Trafford on Saturday and was struck by how many families were in the Salford support, it would be great if even a small percentage of these could commit to watching Salford on a weekly basis next year.

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20 hours ago, paulwalker71 said:

I agree about their stars aligning this year. It's difficult to see how that will happen again.

They are losing their three best players, without any young talent coming through because they don't have an Academy. They're also unlikely to have such good fortune with injuries again next season.

If they can be mid-table next season, I feel sure they'd be delighted.

Lets not get too dramatic - I like Bibby but he isn't one of the three best players. He's been replaced well by Sarge as well. Jones, as good as he is, has also been replaced but in a different way - we've not had an impact forward for a few years (since BMM) and I'm keen to see how Pauli goes.

Hastings is irreplaceable - no argument there. I also think we've done well with injuries but we'll have a slightly deeper squad next year. Lolohea showed in the Grand Final that he's got the potential to step up next year but he'll need Brown or Atkin to defy the doubters. 

I agree with your last point - mid-table, with a sniff of the playoffs and an average crowd close to 5,000 and I'll be happy. If we'd have waited and signed someone like Richardson at 7 then I'd be saying we'd have a chance at the playoffs again but we are lacking a bit of flair.

Looking forward to it anyway and with Watson in charge it feels like we have a chance.

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Sarginson is an upgrade on Bibby while Pauli along with both Mossop and Dudson is quite a powerful unit tbf, Hastings no question is the big big loss, however Brown/Atkin can step up to the plate, tbh Salford still have plenty of quality in the ranks such as this seasons 2nd highest try scorer in Evalds, while Lussick and Lolohea are quality and am sure the club will look to add a bit more.

Main thing for me is they retain the coach, Watsons stock are risen considerably and if he goes then you fear the worst for that team and club, the coach is the glue holding it together and its vital he is retained if Salford want to remain competitive.

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Sarg is superb, and a real 100% player. He is very effective from full back, if Evalds could move up. The main thing is getting enough in the ground by whatever means necessary early in the season for people to feel it is enough of an even. I doubt anyone would be going expecting them to beat the top sides every week, but they will want to be entertained on the pitch and not feel they are joining an obscure cult off it. 

When I went to the Broncos’ game at the Stoop after Wembley and there were only around 2k there it was heart breaking, and brought it home to me that it was just never going to happen. Get 5/6k to the first game, be competitive and that gives them a chance. 

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