Adam Lawton | “That first tackle is going to be pretty special.”

Salford Red Devils new acquisition Adam Lawton is hungry to get back out on the field and prove himself at the The Salford Stadium.
Lawton has had some time away from professional Rugby League before joining Salford but made a huge impact when he arrived on the scene four years ago.
“I’ve definitely got a point to prove,” Lawton said.
He added: “I have to go that extra yard in comparison to last time. I was only 20 when I came onto the scene with Widnes Vikings, so now hopefully I’ve matured a little and gained a bit more experience.
“I’m hopeful I can replicate the performances that helped me break through at Widnes and I’m looking to go one better than I did back in 2014. I have to make a name for myself again.
“I know it’s going to take me a bit of time to get up to speed, there’s no doubting that. But, our Head of Strength and Conditioning, Greg Brown, is one of the best in the business and the backroom team are brilliant so I have every faith they can get me fit and ready for the 2019 season.
“That first tackle is going to pretty special.”
You can read more from Salford Red Devils’ new back-rower Adam Lawton in tomorrow’s edition of the Manchester Evening News.
 
2019 Season Tickets are still available, and you can spread the costs over eight months via our Direct Debit payment plan. For the Direct Debit breakdowns, click HERE. Sign-up by visiting the The Salford Stadium Ticket Office or calling 0161 786 1570.

In the know – Swinton Lions

This year we’ll be introducing a new feature on our website called ‘In the Know’ which will see us quiz a journalist on our upcoming opponents and to start things Tom Bramwell (@tmbrmwll) of the Manchester Evening News has told us everything we need to know about Swinton Lions and Sunday’s game.

Swinton narrowly avoided the drop in 2017. What did you make of their season and their heroics to stay up?

I thought it was pretty incredible with everything that was going on off the field that the players could put in the performances they did and get the results they needed to stay in the Championship. To be totally honest, I just couldn’t see it happening, especially when John Duffy went to Featherstone and Chris Atkin’s move to Hull KR was brought forward. So much credit has to go to Stuart Littler for how he stepped up into the head coach role and helped the side to kick on – going to Odsal and getting that result against Bradford in his first match in charge is one that will live long in the memory.

The Lions have recruited quite heavily in pre-season. What do you make of their new signings and how do you think they can impact Swinton this year?

I’ve been very impressed with their recruitment, especially as no one was really sure what to expect because of the financial situation. Gabe Fell was long talked about as a future star at Wigan and I think if Sam Tomkins hadn’t returned, he’d have had plenty of chances in the first team by now, so he’ll be a good replacement for Jack Murphy. I haven’t seen much of Hayden Hansen who has come in from Redcliffe Dolphins in Australia, but I know the club are very excited to have him on board and think he can bring something special this season. George Tyson is the one that stands out for me though – I’ve been impressed whenever I’ve seen him play for Oldham or Sheffield and I’m sure working with Stuart Littler, who was such a good centre himself, will only help him develop his game even further.

Who do you think will be the key players for the Lions this season and why?

Josh Barlow has re-signed and he often gives the team a big lift, whether it’s breaking the line, getting an offload away or putting in a big hit, so I think he can be really important – provided he keeps his discipline in check! Mike Butt had a fantastic 2017 season and I’d expect him to get plenty of chances to demonstrate his finishing skills this year with centres like Tyson, Chris Hankinson and Rhodri Lloyd playing inside of him.

There has been a lot of activity of the field. Do you think the Lions can stabilise progress both this season and going forward in the coming year?

A lot of the signs coming out of the club are really, really positive – particularly the launch of the Swinton Lions Academy with The Rugby College and more progress with the development at Agecroft. I think Andy Mazey is doing a great job as chairman to steady the ship after such a turbulent time last year, and in Stephen Wild they’ve got a director who is incredibly passionate about the club and has a wealth of experience in the financial sector – I’m confident the club is in good hands and it’s no more than the fans deserve, especially after all their fundraising efforts last year.

Of course, there’s a lot of history between the Clubs added to by Stuart Littler and Ian Watson being coaches. How good is it to see the derby back and what does it bring?

Local rivalries are one of the things that make this sport so great and this derby is no different. I’m sure the players and staff on both sides are excited to be able to kick off their pre-season games with a match that will be this fiercely contested – there’s no friendlies in rugby league really, is there? It seems the two clubs have a fantastic relationship off the field though, but with Stuart and Ian having played and coached together, that probably shouldn’t be much of a surprise.

How do you see the game going?

It’s always a bit of an unknown kicking off pre-season, but with so many new recruits, I won’t be expecting Swinton to look anything close to the finished article. The warm-up matches they’ve got lined up will be all about building up the relationships and understanding between the players, as well as their fitness. For Salford, I’m really keen to see how Rob Lui and Jack Littlejohn get on in the halves, because I think that partnership will be the key to the entire season. Hopefully, we’ll also get a look at Levy Nzoungou and Ben Nakubuwai because I expect they will be further examples of more really astute recruitment from Ian and his coaching staff.

Score prediction: Salford 24-10 Swinton.

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