Wigan Warriors coach Shaun Wane hopes that he won’t again be plagued by injuries in 2017, while he is happy to deal with the huge expectations that come with the job at Wigan.
“Not a week went by last season where we did not have eight or nine front-line, key players out with long-term injuries,” he said.
“The fact that we went on to make the semi-finals of the Challenge Cup and win the Grand Final is testament to ability of the players coming through our ranks. It said a great deal about their character.
“And I honestly don’t find it difficult to live with high expectation from our chairman and the fans. Nobody puts more pressure on me than myself. I want to win everything all the time, so being under that pressure is easy for me.
“We build a culture on small things, not on people’s opinion. It’s small things, punctuality, manners around other people and so on. It’s standards you set as a coach. We do this in training every day.
“There are four trophies up for grabs this season and we will be aiming to win all of them. But so will Tony Smith, Brian McDermott and the rest. There are some great teams up there challenging with us.
“When you consider the number of players we have coming back from long-term injury lay-offs, we will have a fresh and exciting squad, raring to go for the start of next season.”
Wigan open their season with a trip to Salford on Saturday before they face Cronulla Sharks in the World Club Challenge at the DW Stadium, and Wane wants to see his players use their visit to the AJ Bell Stadium as preparation for the game against the Aussie Premiers.
“This is a must-win game,” adds Wane.
“It’s the start of Super League and the week before we play a massive game, so I want us to give a good account of ourselves.”