Salford Red Devils meet Catalans Dragons at the AJ Bell Stadium on Friday in round 15 of Super League. Salford owner Marwan Koukash has ensured the club will pay its respects to the victims and affected families of Monday night’s attack at the Manchester Arena by offering free entry to the stadium for fans in exchange for a donation to those affected by the atrocity – there will also be a minute’s applause during the tie to remember those who lost their lives.
Last Time Out
Both sides’ Magic Weekend fortunes in Newcastle last weekend reflected their polar opposite form. Salford’s 36-22 victory over Leigh was their third straight Super League win while Catalans’ 18-10 loss to Huddersfield, their fourth in a row in the league, cost coach Laurent Frayssinous his job. Assistant coaches Jerome Guisset and Michael Monaghan will oversee the French outfit as they travel to Greater Manchester for Friday’s game.
Ben Murdoch-Masila and Greg Johnson both tallied braces for Salford against the Centurions, while Richie Myler and Iain Thornley’s efforts weren’t enough to stop a late Giants rally that saw Frayssinous leave the club by mutual agreement.
Salford head coach Ian Watson names an unchanged side to the one that beat Neil Jukes’ Centurions in Newcastle, so Murdoch-Masila and Johnson will be looking to add to their recent tries. Greg Bird is a significant absentee for the away side as the appeal against his suspension was unsuccessful. Brayden Williame comes in for Benjamin Garcia in the only change to the French side.
The Red Devils are in great form coming into this tie, whereas the Dragons are rock bottom – not necessarily of the table, but without a permanent head coach and winless in four, they will need to find a spark to get past their hosts. Salford by 14.
Salford: Murdoch-Masila, Kopczak, O’Brien, Johnson, Bibby, Hasson, Jones, Sa’u, Welham, Brining, Tasi, Tomkins, Flanagan, Dobson, Evalds, Krasniqi, Lui, Lannon, Hauraki.
Catalans: Gigot, Inu, Yaha, Walsh, Myler, Moa, Aiton, Casty, Bousquet, Wiliame, Duport, Simon, Thornley, Albert, Da Costa, Seguier, Perez, Dezaria.