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The AMAZING success of Expansion


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I am always so satisfied at the amazing success of expansion. Despite, serious lack of 

support from the establishment and despite often moving out of the top teir of the RFL 

competitions most recent top teir expansion teams have led to long term RL club presence

in their regions. 

 - Gateshead now Newcastle Thunder - after being 'sold off' reformed and now step up to Full time status again. 

- London Broncos - despite a seriously difficult journey they continue, moving into a great small stadium, hands down

better than many others after a period in a below par field. Their consistency has helped to the establishment of other clubs and junior initiatives. 

- Celtic Crusaders - reforming and continuing in North Wales they have just had their best season in a long time. 

 - Dragons Catalan - despite significant challenges they are building a long term legacy and opening the door afresh to new 

professional sides in France. Their success is convincing others of the viability of professional RL in France. 

 - Toronto Wolfpack - despite being hit by the worst economic disaster in close to a century they regrouped to play in the NARL

after removal from Super League recently playing in front of nearly 2000 fans with a likely fan base still larger than a number of Super League sides let alone Championship

The only team entirely non-existent in recent years through Super League expansion being Paris. 

Out of six or seven attempts all of the clubs continue on some level. How good is that!

The defiant intent of Rugby League fans in these expansion areas to maintain their teams and the code is admirable. It always reminds 

me of the way Rugby League was established, defying the establishment, continuing despite all the challenges. 

Long live Rugby league... and expansion 😉

GO LES CATALAN!!!


Ps. Expansion and Tradition can both exist at the same time. It just all needs its only space and place. 



 
 

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Sheffield an expansion club  are still hanging in there despite being shafted years a go , if it wasnt for them i wouldnt have gotten in to the sport.

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15 hours ago, Izmir Zaferi said:

I am always so satisfied at the amazing success of expansion. Despite, serious lack of 

support from the establishment and despite often moving out of the top teir of the RFL 

competitions most recent top teir expansion teams have led to long term RL club presence

in their regions. 

 - Gateshead now Newcastle Thunder - after being 'sold off' reformed and now step up to Full time status again. 

- London Broncos - despite a seriously difficult journey they continue, moving into a great small stadium, hands down

better than many others after a period in a below par field. Their consistency has helped to the establishment of other clubs and junior initiatives. 

- Celtic Crusaders - reforming and continuing in North Wales they have just had their best season in a long time. 

 - Dragons Catalan - despite significant challenges they are building a long term legacy and opening the door afresh to new 

professional sides in France. Their success is convincing others of the viability of professional RL in France. 

 - Toronto Wolfpack - despite being hit by the worst economic disaster in close to a century they regrouped to play in the NARL

after removal from Super League recently playing in front of nearly 2000 fans with a likely fan base still larger than a number of Super League sides let alone Championship

The only team entirely non-existent in recent years through Super League expansion being Paris. 

Out of six or seven attempts all of the clubs continue on some level. How good is that!

The defiant intent of Rugby League fans in these expansion areas to maintain their teams and the code is admirable. It always reminds 

me of the way Rugby League was established, defying the establishment, continuing despite all the challenges. 

Long live Rugby league... and expansion 😉

GO LES CATALAN!!!


Ps. Expansion and Tradition can both exist at the same time. It just all needs its only space and place. 



 
 

Would love to be a fly on the wall if you ever met Parksider.

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You forget to mention Oxford Gloucester Scarborough Carlisle Nottingham Toronto Kent Southend various names of Blackpool and I’m sure there are more

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sometimes you have to take a step backwards to move forward

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34 minutes ago, DEANO said:

You forget to mention Oxford Gloucester Scarborough Carlisle Nottingham Toronto Kent Southend various names of Blackpool and I’m sure there are more

Arnt Gloucester and Toronto still going - just in local leagues??

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10 minutes ago, Mr Frisky said:

Arnt Gloucester and Toronto still going - just in local leagues??

They are indeed but if that’s how you measure “ massive success “………

sometimes you have to take a step backwards to move forward

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5 minutes ago, DEANO said:

They are indeed but if that’s how you measure “ massive success “………

As in life, you win some and lose some - the 2 French teams are winning at the moment.

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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, DEANO said:

You forget to mention Oxford Gloucester Scarborough Carlisle Nottingham Toronto Kent Southend various names of Blackpool and I’m sure there are more

Since when were they in Super League?  (I said top tier) 

I did mention Toronto which recently played in a practice game in front of nearly 2000 fans. There are a number of Super League sides that would struggle to get that in a practice game full of amateurs. 

If a team playing in lower League's despite being shafted is not success than 100 plus years after the split it seems evident that most Rugby League clubs are a failure but... All Super League expansion sides continue, except one, even if not in Super League. 

A number are also climbing back toward the top 🙂 That is pretty massive. 

PS. Evidently I am stirring the pot but the claim expansion has failed is simply not true. The game is broader and deeper because of it even if not in the top tier.

 

Edited by Izmir Zaferi
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12 minutes ago, Henson Park Old Firm said:

He makes a decent point.

The sport has probably tried to run before it could walk over the last 30 years.

It’s been a fairly scatter gun approach and hasn’t really worked. The successful clubs are still in the north of England and the south of France, just like they always have been.

Maybe we should try filling in the blanks and “fish where the fish are”?

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2 hours ago, David Shepherd said:

He makes a decent point.

The sport has probably tried to run before it could walk over the last 30 years.

It’s been a fairly scatter gun approach and hasn’t really worked. The successful clubs are still in the north of England and the south of France, just like they always have been.

Maybe we should try filling in the blanks and “fish where the fish are”?

I see this notion bandied around a lot, "focus on the heartlands"/"It's a northern game" etc. but this idea always comes across as really vague. Now I'll state off the bat that I don't think strong roots in the North is anything for the sport to be ashamed of at all, nor would teams like Leigh/Fev/Fax/Bately getting a long-awaited shot in the top flight be a negative thing as some make it out to be.

As for the "Focus on the North" statement, it appears to come from an inherent implication that we aren't doing that already. How much more focused on the North can we get when 90% of the teams in the pro/semi-pro pyramid are from the North. Does focusing on the heartlands mean upping that percentage to 95 or 100% and what real purpose would that serve? In what way did the likes of Toronto exist contrary to this focus on the heartlands when they brought their own resources to the table, so as to alleviate any potential burden on those in the semi-pro ranks.

I just struggle to see how there could be a greater allocation of resources to the North than there already is, and what tangible benefits such an allocation would actually provide.

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11 hours ago, David Shepherd said:

He makes a decent point.

The sport has probably tried to run before it could walk over the last 30 years.

It’s been a fairly scatter gun approach and hasn’t really worked. The successful clubs are still in the north of England and the south of France, just like they always have been.

Maybe we should try filling in the blanks and “fish where the fish are”?

I'd say plugging the gap between Newcastle and York would be a good starting point. Given the success of the North East Amateur Rugby League, there is a decent base from which to build. In and around Teesside, a semi-pro rugby league club would probably have more chance of success in Hartlepool than in Middlesbrough or Stockton.

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14 hours ago, David Shepherd said:

He makes a decent point.

The sport has probably tried to run before it could walk over the last 30 years.

It’s been a fairly scatter gun approach and hasn’t really worked. The successful clubs are still in the north of England and the south of France, just like they always have been.

Maybe we should try filling in the blanks and “fish where the fish are”?

They did fill in the blanks.

And then the heartlands got scared and scrapped all the development officer posts.

With the results that are now evident as we continue to contract further and further.

Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life. (Terry Pratchett)

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On 04/10/2021 at 00:24, David Shepherd said:

Maybe we should try filling in the blanks and “fish where the fish are”?

What suggests that being closer to a traditional club makes the people more receptive to Rugby League? 

I think their lack of interest is evidence that even with close clubs they likely find Rugby League uninteresting or Rugby League culture backward.

Toronto showed us that given investment and profile there are far more fish away from our traditional fishing ponds then in them. The people often have less historic bias and are up for a unique and exciting sport. 

Maybe the best fishing holes are in Rabat, and Istanbul or Belgrade and Moscow? 

(PS. Local Traditional clubs should be given incentives to start new clubs nearby as feeders - St Helens into Liverpool etc) 

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On 02/10/2021 at 15:19, Izmir Zaferi said:

I am always so satisfied at the amazing success of expansion. Despite, serious lack of 

support from the establishment and despite often moving out of the top teir of the RFL 

competitions most recent top teir expansion teams have led to long term RL club presence

in their regions. 

 - Gateshead now Newcastle Thunder - after being 'sold off' reformed and now step up to Full time status again. 

- London Broncos - despite a seriously difficult journey they continue, moving into a great small stadium, hands down

better than many others after a period in a below par field. Their consistency has helped to the establishment of other clubs and junior initiatives. 

- Celtic Crusaders - reforming and continuing in North Wales they have just had their best season in a long time. 

 - Dragons Catalan - despite significant challenges they are building a long term legacy and opening the door afresh to new 

professional sides in France. Their success is convincing others of the viability of professional RL in France. 

 - Toronto Wolfpack - despite being hit by the worst economic disaster in close to a century they regrouped to play in the NARL

after removal from Super League recently playing in front of nearly 2000 fans with a likely fan base still larger than a number of Super League sides let alone Championship

The only team entirely non-existent in recent years through Super League expansion being Paris. 

Out of six or seven attempts all of the clubs continue on some level. How good is that!

The defiant intent of Rugby League fans in these expansion areas to maintain their teams and the code is admirable. It always reminds 

me of the way Rugby League was established, defying the establishment, continuing despite all the challenges. 

Long live Rugby league... and expansion 😉

GO LES CATALAN!!!


Ps. Expansion and Tradition can both exist at the same time. It just all needs its only space and place. 



 
 

That's success is it.

Broken clubs

Almost every heartland club outside of SL.

Lost generation of fans and players.

Amateur  game on the brink of destruction, you know the part of the game where all the players begin.

Schools RL, virtually non-existent.

Fans of nearly every team walking away.

Yup, a real triumph.

 

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1 hour ago, Kirmonds pouch said:

That's success is it.

Broken clubs

Almost every heartland club outside of SL.

Lost generation of fans and players.

Amateur  game on the brink of destruction, you know the part of the game where all the players begin.

Schools RL, virtually non-existent.

Fans of nearly every team walking away.

Yup, a real triumph.

 

The incompetence of the heartland and expansion clubs maintaining themselves despite opposition external and internal to RL has very little to do with one another outside of a parochial view that sees the survival of one's own club as the only thing that matters. 

As I run and coach an amateur club and small League I fully understand the importance of the local game. I also understand the importance of profession leagues that actually inspire us and kids to play rather than watch them get inspired by our competitors. 

 

So, yes, that every expansion club in Super League continued and actually continues to climb back up off the canvas is in fact exceptional. 

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