Houles determined to entertain

Toulouse Olympique intend to turn on the style in their first season in the top-flight, according to coach Sylvain Houles.

The 40-year-old former French international, who played in Super League for Huddersfield, London and Wakefield and finished his playing career with the Olympians, is determined to stick with a French philosophy that has guided the club to the highest level in the European game.

“We’re a French Rugby League club and we play the expansive game,” Houles told League Express. “It’s in our DNA and we are never going to change.”

Houles is sticking with the flair tactics that have seen Toulouse rise from League One to the top level within six seasons but admits there will be times when he will have to turn off the fancy footy.

He added: “We have recruited players who want to play that style of rugby, players who are footy-smart who know how to react quickly and correctly during games.

“We do want to play the expansive game but there is no risk in the way that we do it, we are in control and know when to turn it on or off.

“We will keep going, playing the way we do but the difference will be our defence. We’ve worked really hard on that side of our game, we set ourselves this goal in 2020 and although Covid ruined that season and had a major impact in 2021, we continued to put the effort in week-in, week-out, to improve our defence.”

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