McIlorum & McMeeken return for Catalans

Catalans Dragons are in the market for new recruits as the Super League leaders seek to strengthen their bid for Grand Final glory this season.

Catalans extended their club-record winning run to twelve games last week with a 40-20 victory over Wakefield Trinity and remained top of the table for the seventh successive week.

But coach Steve McNamara is keen to keep the winning momentum rolling and he has hinted at adding “the right players” to the squad in the coming weeks.

The loss of loose-forward Ben Garcia to a broken arm could keep the Catalans’ captain out of action for the remainder of the season and McNamara is looking to plug the gap.

Asked by League Express if he was about to go shopping, McNamara said, “Potentially. It’s part and parcel of the game, you are going to lose players sometimes but we’ve got some good young players waiting for their opportunities.

“We already had one quota spot available at the start of the season, and we have two now since Israel Folau left.

“I’m not saying we will use those quota spots but we have cap space and we are willing to bring people in, but only if we need to and they are the right person for this club.

“It’s exciting times for us, we’re in a good position, we’ve got young players itching to get in, we can bring in new players if we need to, so we’re a happy bunch.”

League Express understands that a bid by the Dragons to sign former St Helens prop Luke Thompson on a short-term deal until the end of the season has been rejected by his current club Canterbury Bulldogs and Catalans have now switched their attention elsewhere.

More pressure was added to the recruitment drive with the news that three more players have been added to the injury list in Perpignan, Julian Bousquet (bicep), Matt Whitley (adductor) and Tom Davies (pectoral) will all miss out on today’s game at Hull KR.

McNamara said hooker Michael McIlorum and Michael McMeeken would be available for the Robins’ clash, adding: “Micky (McIlorum), at a push, could have played against Wakefield but with Monday coming up quickly we’re hoping he will feature for us very soon. We miss him, and his aggression and the way he moves around the field defensively but Alrix Da Costa is developing really well.”

Dragons squad v Hull KR: 1 Arthur Mourgue, 3 Samisoni Langi, 4 Dean Whare, 5 Fouad Yaha, 6 James Maloney, 7 Josh Drinkwater, 8 Gil Dudson, 9 Micky Mcilorum, 12 Mike McMeeken, 14 Alrix Da Costa, 15 Benjamin Jullien, 16 Paul Seguier, 17 Mickael Goudemand, 21 Corentin Le Cam, 22 Joel Tomkins, 27 Joe Chan, 28 Sam Kasiano, 29 Sam Tomkins, 31 César Rouge, 32 Romain Franco.

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