Preview | Catalans Dragons vs Salford Red Devils | Saturday 21st July

The Red Devils travel to Perpignan to take on Catalans Dragons at the Stade Gilbert Brutus this coming Saturday, and Ian Watson’s side will be looking to build on their encouraging display during last week’s loss to Castleford Tigers. 
Last time out
Salford head into this weekend’s showdown after producing a creditable display last Friday at the The Salford Stadium.
Despite falling to a 6-24 defeat, Watson’s troops more than matched last year’s League Leaders Shield winners and found themselves on level terms at the interval – though Castleford did take the lead through Jake Webster on 18 minutes.
After persistently piling the pressure amongst the Tigers’ defensive line, Salford’s efforts were rewarded five minutes prior to the break when Jake Bibby latched onto Ed Chamberlain’s low kick to touch down in the corner.
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However, the second half didn’t quite live up to expectations and the visitors crossed for three second half efforts as Webster grabbed his second, before Michael Shenton and Kieran Gill also crossed to snatch victory, following an error-ridden affair.
Catalans meanwhile, head into the tie on the back of a thrilling 22-22 draw with Warrington last time out. Despite taking the lead through Benjamin Jullien, the Dragons soon found themselves up against it as the hosts scored three quick-fire tries through Bryson Goodwin, Josh Charnley and Harvey Livett.
However, the French side regrouped and immediately clawed their way back into the contest as Michael McIlorum surged over the whitewash, before Tony Gigot crossed three minutes prior to the break to the level the scores.
Josh Drinkwater – who has been in breathtaking form since signing for Catalans in April – kicked five goals, but neither side was unable to claim a late victory.
Form 
Both sides made slow starts to 2018, Steve McNamara’s Dragons had won just once prior to the Good Friday meeting with Salford at the AJ Bell, whilst the Red Devils had achieved marginally better with two victories.
On that March afternoon, it was Watson’s side who’d triumph as tries from Jake Bibby, Niall Evalds, Greg Johnson, Josh Jones and Kris Welham along with six goals from Robert Lui ensured The Red Devils secured a comfortable win.
That fixture appeared to spark a French revolution. Since then, Catalans have played an intriguing brand of Rugby and have managed to conjure up 8 wins from 14 games and reach the semi-finals of the Ladbrokes Challenge Cup.
During their recent run, the Dragons overturned Salford 26-12 at the Magic Weekend, as former red Jodie Broughton crossed for a hat-trick.
Salford have swept aside Huddersfield Giants, Wakefield Trinity and Widnes Vikings in the same period but have suffered frequent injury blows. The Red Devils will be hopeful of producing another battling performance this time out, after nullifying Castleford’s attacking power for much of last week’s tie.
Head-to-Head
In this week’s head-to-head we pit versatile backs Ed Chamberlain and David Mead against each other, as we highlight the pair’s influences within their respective sides.
Chamberlain – who joined the Red Devils permanently on Wednesday – has certainly caught the eye since arriving initially on-loan from Widnes last month. Naturally a centre, the 22-year-old is also capable of filling the void on either wing or at full-back, with the latter being his primary position for Salford thus far.
Ed has made three appearances for the club during his loan spell and particularly impressed in recent defeats to Hull Kingston Rovers and Castleford.
It was during his home debut versus the Tigers where the youngster truly shone though, the former Widnes man produced a classy display throughout and provided a delicate kick to assist Jake Bibby’s first-half effort.
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David Mead is one of the most influential players in the world scene of Rugby League, the Papua New Guinea captain shone for his country at the 2017 RLWC ‘down under’ and has carried this form into his spell with the Dragons.
The 29-year-old is the Dragons’ top scorer with 8 tries and possesses a similar versatility to Chamberlain, which makes him a formidable threat. Mead is more than handy at full-back, wing or centre – with Catalans boss McNamara opting to play him in the former for much of the campaign.
Team News
Jackson Hastings – who joined the Red Devils this week – misses out on the 19-man squad and will not arrive in the UK until next week, injured duo Greg Johnson and Logan Tomkins remain sidelined for the trip to Perpignan.
On a positive note, Full-back Niall Evalds returns to the squad following a nine-week spell on the sidelines after breaking a bone in his leg during April’s victory over Wakefield Trinity.
24-year-old Evalds replaces Luke Burgess in the squad who is still suffering from a recurring knee injury. Prop Craig Kopczak is named in the squad but is unlikely to feature as the forward hasn’t fully recovered from a quadricep injury.
French forward Levy Nzoungou made his second appearance – and his home debut – last Friday against Castleford Tigers and will be looking to make it back-to-back appearances this weekend as he returns to his homeland.
As for the visitors, former Red Devil Jodie Broughton has been given the go-ahead to feature and will be looking to haunt Salford once more, after grabbing a sublime hat-trick as Catalans triumphed over Salford in May’s Magic Weekend. The winger replaces Mickael Goudemand in what is the sole change to the French side’s squad from last week’s battle with Warrington.
Squads
Catalans: David Mead, Jodie Broughton, Brayden Williame, Fouad Yaha, Samisoni Langi, Rémi Casty, Sam Moa, Louis Anderson, Benjamin Garcia, Greg Bird, Julian Bousquet, Mickael Simon, Jason Baitieri, Michael McIlorum, Lewis Tierney, Benjamin Jullien, Tony Gigot, Josh Drinkwater, Kenny Edwards.
Salford: Junior Sa’u, Niall Evalds, Rob Lui, Craig Kopczak, Josh Jones, Mark Flanagan, Lama Tasi, Ryan Lannon, Tyrone McCarthy, Ben Nakubuwai, Josh Wood, Derrell Olpherts, Lee Mossop, Jake Bibby, Levy Nzoungou, Daniel Murray, Jake Shorrocks, Ed Chamberlain, Greg Burke.
Table Permutations  
Salford have the opportunity to move to within a point of Hull Kingston Rovers in the Betfred Super League table, providing the Robins fail to secure any points when they host Warrington Wolves at KCOM Craven Park this evening.
A Catalans victory would see the Dragons move above Wakefield into 6th place, at least until Trinity entertain Hull FC on Sunday afternoon.
Ready for the Rhinos!
Purchase your tickets for our game with Leeds on Friday 27th July from the Club Ticket Office, on 0161 786 1570 or by simply clicking HERE.

Factfile | Catalans Dragons vs Salford Red Devils | Saturday 21st July

Ahead of tomorrow’s Betfred Super League clash with Catalans Dragons in Perpignan we take a look at some facts and stats behind the fixture.
Head-to-Head
It’s been a mixed bag of results for the Red Devils against Catalans Dragons in recent seasons. Salford have won two of the last three meetings with the sides but did come out on the losing side in the most recent fixture as part of this year’s Dacia Magic Weekend at St James’ Park, Newcastle.
However, Salford had earned back-to-back home victories over the Dragons before this with a 32-16 win over the Easter period following a massive 50-12 hammering of the French side in last year’s clash at the The Salford Stadium.

But, the Red Devils haven’t had much luck in Perpignan in recent seasons. Salford’s last win in France came in the form of a 22-10 victory in 2011 with the Red Devils losing in five of their last six trips to Catalans.
Overall in the Betfred Super League, Catalans have won 13 meetings, Salford have come out on top on 11 occasions and there has been one draw between the sides which was a memorable 40-40 affair back in 2015. You can read more about that game here.
Try-scoring
Junior Sa’u has scored in two of his last three visits to Perpignan. In fact, the Red Devils centre has crossed four times in his last three appearances in France crossing for a hat-trick at the Stade Gilbert Brutus in 2016.
Sa’u has scored seven tries this season for the Red Devils with the most recent coming in form of a double in Salford’s trip to Hull Kingston Rovers a fortnight ago.
Evalds – who returns to the 19-man squad this weekend – also has a terrific try-scoring record against the Dragons going over for four tries in last four games against Catalans. The fullback scored twice in Perpignan back in 2016 before crossing in each of the last two meetings at the The Salford Stadium. He missed the most recent game at the Dacia Magic Weekend through injury.
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Former Red Devil Jodie Broughton scored a hat-trick at this year’s Dacia Magic Weekend meeting between the teams and also crossed for a brace in a 32-42 Dragons win in 2016. The winger has scored five tries in the last four games between the two clubs.
Fellow winger Fouad Yaha has scored three tries in his last three games against Salford however all three came at the The Salford Stadium. Vincent Duport – who is two scores from 100 career tries – has enjoyed playing against Salford with six tries against the Red Devils since 2015.
Jake Bibby extended his try-scoring run to four consecutive games last weekend with his try against Castleford Tigers. Bibby is now level in terms of current try-scoring sequences with Huddersfield’s Darnell McIntosh, Hull KR’s Adam Quinlan and Wigan’s Tom Davies.
Ready for the Rhinos!
Purchase your tickets for our game with Leeds on Friday 27th July from the Club Ticket Office, on 0161 786 1570 or by simply clicking HERE.

Flashback | Catalans Dragons 40-40 Salford Red Devils | Saturday 7th March 2015

Ahead of this weekend’s Betfred Super League clash between Catalans Dragons and Salford Red Devils in Perpignan, we take a look back at one of Salford’s most memorable visits to the Stade Gilbert Brutus in this week’s ‘Flashback’. 
The Red Devils travelled to the south of France with just one win from their opening three fixtures in the 2015 Super League season. Iestyn Harris’ men had pipped Hull FC 32-28 at the The Salford Stadium, but had suffered defeats to both Warrington Wolves and St Helens.
Catalans meanwhile, had also fallen to the hands of the Saints but had gone one better than Salford, having picked up two victories over Warrington and Castleford Tigers.
However, it was Salford who started brightest. The Red Devils flew out of the blocks to race into a 22-0 lead and silence the lively Catalan crowd.
It took just just three minutes for the visitors to register their first try, Junior Sa’u collected a short ball from Tommy Lee before bulldozing himself over the whitwash.
Josh Griffin failed to land the resulting conversion, but he quickly forgot about his miss when Cory Paterson picked up a loose ball and sent him over 11 minutes later – Griffin added the first of his 6 goals.
Paterson then turned scorer two minutes later, Frenchman Theo Fages found the Australian with an inside pass before Paterson bounced off three Catalans defenders to touch down.
Salford were in a ruthless mood and soon found themselves over again. This time Lee threw a quick dummy to deceive the Dragons’ line and slid over, before Griffin added the extras to give Salford a 22-0 lead with less than 20 minutes on the clock.
The hosts regrouped however and claimed their first score of the contest as a neat pass from Todd Carney invited Zeb Taia to power his way over, despite the best efforts of Rangi Chase.
Catalans then hit back with two quick-fire efforts through Vincent Duport and Ben Pomeroy, Scott Dureau converted both scores.
Salford were 22-18 ahead at the break and it was the Red Devils who struck first in the second period as Fages returned to haunt his former club. After capitalising on an Elliot Whitehead error, the France international raced the length of the pitch to score three minutes into the half.
Pomeroy replied with his second from close-range, but Salford regained the lead through Chase as Kevin Locke palmed his own kick back to him as the half-back crossed over unchallenged and extend Salford’s lead.
Michael Oldfield touched down in the corner to reduce the arrears before Dureau landed the extras before adding a subsequent penalty to level the scores at 32-32.
Catalans thought they’d snatched victory when Whitehead made up for his earlier mistake and scored in the corner before Ian Henderson touched down was in 8 minutes from time.
Dureau’s failure to convert both came back to haunt the hosts as Paterson grabbed his second before Griffin converted the score and added a last minute penalty to rescue a dramatic draw for the Red Devils.
Then Salford Head Coach, Iestyn Harris, said: “To come away from Catalans and get a point is really pleasing, to concede 40 points is not.
“We didn’t handle the periods when they had momentum. I think if we had managed that, we would have won the game rather convincingly. We need to work on our game-management skills.
“With us being eight points behind with five minutes to go, if someone offered those circumstances and to take a point, I think there are a lot of teams who would take a point in those situations.”
The teams that day:
Catalans Dragons: Escare; Oldfield, Pomeroy, Tonga, Duport; Carney, Dureau; Anderson, Henderson, Lima, Taia, Whitehead, Mounis.
Interchanges: Elima, Garcia, Bousquet, Baitieri.
Salford Red Devils: Locke; Johnson, Sa’u, Paterson, J Griffin; Chase, Fages; Taylor, Lee, Tasi, Hansen, Hauraki, J Walne.
Interchanges: Morley, D Griffin, A Walne, Hood.
Referee: Phil Bentham
Attendance: 7,800
Ready for the Rhinos!
Purchase your tickets for our game with Leeds on Friday 27th July from the Club Ticket Office, on 0161 786 1570 or by simply clicking HERE.

Tickets | Purchase tickets for our trip to Catalans Dragons in July

Tickets are now available for our trip to Catalans Dragons at the Stade Gilbert Brutus on Saturday 21st July at the Club Ticket Office and over the phone.  
Remember, Salford Red Devils retain 25% of any purchases from the The Salford Stadium Club Ticket Office.
Ticket prices are as follows:
Adult: £17
Students: £8.50
Under 12: £3.50
Carers: Free
Junior Season Ticket holders: Junior Swaps available at the AJ Stadium Club Ticket Office.
Please note there is no concession price for seniors and juniors are under 12. Prices will remain the same on matchdays.
The away fans will be situated in the Tribune Puig-Aubert. Tickets will go off sale from the The Salford Stadium Club Ticket Office on Wednesday 18th July at 9:30pm.

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