Leeds Rhinos Director of Rugby Kevin Sinfield stood in for a self-isolating Richard Agar in the post-match press conference.
The Rhinos were chasing a deficit throughout the game and never managed to take the lead, with the opening quarter from Catalans doing the damage.
Sinfield said: “There’s an old saying – ‘you can’t win big games early on but you can certainly lose them’ – and that was true tonight. Being 18 [points] behind in a game of that magnitude just made it too hard for us.”
Furthermore, squad rotations were affected early-on as the hard-hitting encounter between the two sides began to take its physical and mental toll.
“Mikolaj [Oledzki] and Ava [Seumanufagai] both failed their head [injury] assessments. They’re both fine in the dressing room but had no chance of coming back on,” he said.
“I have to say I thought our effort was outstanding. I thought at crucial times, our skill was off and we made some errors that invited Catalans to attack us, but my overriding thought is that I’m proud of our efforts tonight.”