Ian Watson | “I thought we looked quite smooth”

Salford Red Devils got 2019 off to a great start with a 54-6 victory over local rivals Swinton Lions and Head Coach Ian Watson was pleased with various aspects of his side’s performance.

On the game…

I thought it was a good performance and we did what we’ve worked on in the pre-season. We got out of our own half a little bit too easily as we got quite a few penalties on tackle three. I’d have like to see a little more of an arm-wrestle to see more of what we have worked on. But everything that was put in front of the boys they reacted really well to especially when we were making all the changes to mix it up a bit people got plenty of game time.

On adapting following the changes…

I thought we looked quite smooth even when Jackson [Hastings] and Rob [Lui] came off and we put Niall [Evalds] into the halves. We’ve done a bit of practice in training running with different combinations just in case anything happens. We know we’ve got a small squad, but we’ve got players who can play in different positions and that was on show for us against Swinton. 

On Connor Davies-Aspey’s debut…

I was really pleased for him. He’s a baby, to be fair, and I thought he did great. He made a couple of breaks and a little bit of inexperience cost him from making a try for Jansin [Turgut] but he created a nice try for Derrell [Olpherts]. I’m sure he’ll be telling everyone about nearly getting his ribs knocked out as well, but I thought it was great for a young kid to come in and do that.

On fellow triallist – Calvin Wellington…

Calvin did really well coming in at left centre. He has the ability to play on both sides and he transfers the ball really well, but he suits us with him not having a preference as to which side he plays on.

On the players who didn’t feature…

All going well they should be included next weekend against Wigan. With the game being a little different at the moment with the stop clock we wanted our middles to get decent minutes and get used to how it feels to be under the pump and play under the stop clock. That’s why we didn’t make a change in the first half and then let the middles run for a full forty in the second half, also.

On how the players handled the stop clock…

We’ve got players here who are big enough and fit enough to play long minutes if you look at the first half, we had Mark Flanagan, Lee Mossop and Gil Dudson who all did a full forty and handled it really comfortably.

On the stop clock…

It flowed a lot better today. I thought the first ten minutes went really quickly, it used to take a long time to get to the ten-minute mark in some games but today I thought the stop clock helped today and it sped the game up. My thing with it was when you’re watching a game on Sky Sports, they were finishing way beyond 10pm and the game was getting dragged out longer and longer, but I think the stop clock kind of drags that back in really rather than it being stop-start. Hopefully, it’ll make the Betfred Super League more entertaining.

On goal kicking…

No, we’ve no issues there. Ed [Chamberlain] practices religiously so we’ve not got much of a problem with that. It was fairly windy when Ed was out there kicking today. The good thing is last year I don’t think we had a single goal kicker for the majority but now we’ve got a handful of genuine goal kickers – Ed, Jackson, Rob, Joey [Lussick] and Niall likes to put a kick in every now and again. So, we’ve no worries in that department.
 
Tickets for Salford Red Devils’ next pre-season friendly are available to purchase at the Club Ticket Office, over the phone on 0161 786 1570 or online HERE. For a reminder of ticket prices, click HERE.
Salford Red Devils 2019 Season Tickets are still available to purchase from the Club Ticket Office, over the phone on 0161 786 1570 or online HERE. You can spread the cost via Direct Debit payments, for more details, click HERE.

Match Report | Salford Red Devils 52-6 Swinton Lions

Salford Red Devils got 2019 off to a perfect start with an eleven-try rout over local rivals Swinton Lions at the The Salford Stadium.
Junior Sa’u, Greg Johnson and Joey Lussick all grabbed braces on a rampant afternoon for Ian Watson’s men while Jackson Hastings, Niall Evalds, Rob Lui, Ed Chamberlain and Derrell Olpherts also got their names on the scoresheet.
It was Sa’u who opened the scoring powering over from close-range after collecting the ball at the second attempt. Hastings was the provider for the opener, but he soon turned try-scorer six minutes in pouncing on Lui’s neat kick under the posts.
The Red Devils fast start continued when Mark Flanagan found Evalds on his inside to cut open the Swinton defence for the third time in the opening fifteen minutes. However, the Lions did cross shortly after as Oscar Thomas’ low kick wasn’t dealt with by Salford and Mike Butt was quickest to react.
Swinton’s revival was short-lived however as Lui managed to fend off three Swinton defenders to force his way over after jinking inside. With around eight minutes of the half remaining Chamberlain benefitted from some quick hands out wide to further the lead going into the break.
Head Coach Ian Watson made five changes at the break and it was substitute Johnson who got the scoring for the second half underway. The winger went close a minute earlier but was held down by Lewis Hatton who was sent to the sin-bin. However, Johnson did get on the end of a well-timed Kris Welham pass moments later.
In similar fashion to the first half, Flanagan would again find an onrushing Evalds on the inside and the full-back found Lussick in support who notched his first of the afternoon. Evalds was causing all sorts of problems for Swinton and his quick play at first receiver followed by a sublime tip-on from Welham put Johnson in for his second in just six minutes.
A try-scoring run of four in nine minutes was rounded off when Lussick’s low kick was chased down by Welham with the centre then giving it back to the Australian for his second.
Swinton would be handed another yellow card when Butt held down Olpherts who had raced seventy metres from his own try-line. The man advantage again proved dividend for Salford as Academy player and triallist Connor Davies-Aspey cut through the Lions line before finding Olpherts in the corner to round off the scoring.
Salford welcome current Betfred Super League champions Wigan Warriors to the The Salford Stadium on Sunday 20th January, 2pm kick-off, in their second pre-season friendly.
Salford Red Devils: Evalds, Bibby, Sa’u, Welham, Chamberlain; Lui, Hastings; Mossop, Lussick, Dudson, Jones, Turgut, Flanagan.
Interchanges: Griffin, McCarthy, Nakubuwai, Johnson, Olpherts, Davies-Aspey, Wellington.
Swinton Lions: Hansen, Butt, Lloyd, Williams, Aaronson; Fairclough, Thomas; Bennion, Waterworth, Austin, Hope, Jones, Hatton.
Interchanges: Brickhill, Gray, Hall, Halton, Jones, Kenga, Ratu, Warne, Worrall, Ashton.
 
Salford Tries: Sa’u (3’, 35’), Hastings (6’), Evalds (13’), Lui (19), Chamberlain (33’), Johnson (54’ 60), Lussick (56, 63’), Olpherts (76’).
Salford Goals: Chamberlain (7’, 14’, 34’), Lussick (64’).
Swinton Tries: Butt (16’).
Swinton Goals: Thomas (17’).
 
Swinton Sin-bins: Hatton (52’), Butt (67’).
 
Referee: Liam Moore.
Attendance: 1798.

Ian Watson | “We’re definitely excited.”

Ahead of tomorrow’s pre-season friendly against Swinton Lions, Salford Red Devils Head Coach Ian Watson gave his thoughts on a variety of topics including pre-season, his squad and this weekend’s opponents.

On getting back underway…

“We’re really excited. We’ve got through all the tough stuff in pre-season and now it’s time to get started and now it’s about what we can do on the field and seeing where we are at particularly in regard to the start of the Betfred Super League season and fine tuning those last little details. But, we’re definitely excited.”

On the fixture…

“Salford vs Swinton doesn’t happen all that often anymore so it’s always good when we get to go head-to-head. It’s going to be a great occasion at the The Salford Stadium and I’m hoping we see a big crowd to support the lads for the first game of 2019.”

On squad selection…

“We’ll go strong. The lads who’ve impressed in pre-season will get first shot because you get rewarded and some of the lads have really put their hands up in pre-season. Jake Bibby has come on leaps and bounds while Ed Chamberlain has been outstanding since he joined. We will give the majority of them a game, but we may hold a few back for our second pre-season game against Wigan Warriors next weekend.”

On the two triallists…

“We’ve got young Connor Davies-Aspey who is 16 years old and is from our Salford Red Devils Education Academy team. It’s a big plus for the Salford Red Devils Foundation that he has come in and trained with us and he’s done really well. We’ve decided to give him a one-month trial and maybe hand him an appearance this weekend against Swinton.
“The other triallist is Calvin Wellington who came through the ranks at St Helens and has been away playing Rugby Union. Hgot a very good background. We’ll see how he goes against Swinton.”

On a few injuries…

“Both Josh Wood and Logan Tomkins picked up injuries at the backend of last season and are still recovering.
“Josh Wood has been in full-time training with the squad, but he needs to up his contact a little more before we can give him a game. He’s a little behind schedule for where we need him to be but in the next month, we’ll start to get him where we need him to be.
“Logan Tomkins has missed all of pre-season out on the field and his injury is just about us making sure we get him to the right stage so that he doesn’t struggle again on his return.”

On Swinton Lions…

“Swinton have rebuilt really well, and they’ve got a strong squad. Of course, they’ve signed Gavin Bennion who was with us last season, so he is going to want to have a big game and they’ve got a few other players with Salford links so it’s going to be interesting.”
Tickets for the game are still available to purchase and you can do so prior to the game from the The Salford Stadium Ticket Office. You can also purchase over the phone on 0161 786 1570 or by simply clicking HERE.
For a reminder of prices, click HERE.

Matchday Information | Salford Red Devils vs Swinton Lions | Saturday 12th January

Everything you need to know ahead of the Red Devils’ first game of 2019.

Key Information

Salford Red Devils will host Swinton Lions tomorrow afternoon in our opening pre-season friendly of 2019. The game is set to kick-off at 1pm.
Only the West Stand will be open for tomorrow’s fixture with Salford Red Devils fans being situated to the South of the West Stand while Swinton Lions supporters will be situated towards the North of the West Stand.

Ticketing

You can purchase tickets for tomorrow’s game against Swinton Lions at the Club Ticket Office prior to kick-off. You must purchase a ticket from the Ticket Office as oppose to paying at the turnstile. Remember, tickets are also available over the phone on 0161 786 1570 or online HERE. For a reminder of the ticket prices, click HERE.
Season Tickets are available for collection up until 12:15pm before the game and will be available for collection from the Club Ticket Office following full-time. You can also purchase your 2019 Season Ticket up until 12:15pm and following full-time from the Club Ticket Office with the Direct Debit payment option being available. For a reminder of the ticket prices, click HERE.
We will also have tickets for our next pre-season clash with Wigan Warriors available to purchase following the game from the Club Ticket Office. For a reminder of prices, click HERE.
Also, tickets for our first home game of the 2018 Betfred Super League season against London Broncos on Sunday 10th February will be on sale at the Club Ticket Office. For all prices, click HERE. Tickets for this fixture are also available over the phone on 0161 786 1570 or online HERE. You will save money by purchasing in advance of gameday either online or at the The Salford Stadium.
Tickets and coach travel for our opening game of the 2019 Betfred Super League against Huddersfield Giants will also be available to purchase and book at the Club Ticket Office post-match. Click HERE for all the details.

Stadium & Security

The Salford Stadium turnstiles will open for general admission at 11:45am.
If you have purchased a ticket in our 1873 Club for tomorrow’s fixture, you can access the suite from 11:30am via the Main Reception of the The Salford Stadium. You must be wrist-banded on entry to gain access to the suite.
The smoking pens at either end of the West Stand will be open for fans to use. These will be open before pre-game and close as the first half gets underway. The smoking pens will re-open ten minutes before half-time and close as the second half gets underway.
Please remember that all bags will be checked on entry to the The Salford Stadium.

Transport and Parking

The Salford RLFC Supporters’ Trust buses won’t be in action for tomorrow’s fixture however they will be making a return for our opening Betfred Super League fixture of the 2019 season as we face London Broncos on Sunday 10th February. Stay tuned for more information.
Supporters looking for bus travel to the game can use the 67 and 100 bus services from Manchester via Salford Precinct and Eccles. The 67 stops a five-minute walk from the The Salford Stadium while the 100 service now goes down the new road between the Trafford Centre and the The Salford Stadium with the nearest stop being at Beyond Manchester.
Car parking is available at the The Salford Stadium and is priced at £6 per car.

Marquee and Catering

The marquee will be open from 10:30am for anyone looking to watch the Salford Red Devils Rising Stars fixture, more information below. The mobile catering vans will be open outside the The Salford Stadium. Food and drinks will also be available to purchase in the West Stand concourse and the 1873 Club.
External toilets will be open from 10:15am.

Academy Fixture

The Salford Red Devils Rising Stars team will face the City of Hull on the outside training field at 10:30am and this game is open to fans to watch free of charge. Arrive early and support the youngsters as they look to earn a massive victory over the City of Hull.

Half-time activity

The half-time draw will be conducted with the winners being confirmed over the PA system and on social media. There will also be a signed shirt raffle conducted at half-time. Purchase your tickets from our friendly sellers who will be located in and around the West Stand.
The Red Angels Dance Team will be performing before kick-off and at half-time. Be sure to give them a warm welcome as they entertain you for the first time in 2019.
Of course, Dr Devil will be out on the field to entertain the fans. Make sure to make some noise for Rugby League’s number one mascot.

Additional Notes

There will be a minutes silence before kick-off to remember all Salford and Swinton supporters who have passed away over the last year.
 
For any more details or enquiries about match day, please E-Mail enquiries@salfordreddevils.net.

Adam Walker joins Salford Red Devils

In today’s edition of the Manchester Evening News, it was exclusively revealed that prop-forward Adam Walker has joined Salford Red Devils.
Walker hasn’t played since testing positive for cocaine whist at Wakefield Trinity in 2017, but the now reformed character has the chance to make an impact once again; an opportunity that isn’t lost on him.
The 27-year-old said: “I’m absolutely thrilled to have a club for the 2019 season and I’m extremely grateful to Salford Red Devils for giving me this opportunity.
“From day one speaking to Director of Rugby and Operations Ian Blease and Head Coach Ian Watson I could see that Salford – as a Club – have some real strong beliefs and values that centre around the community and doing good in the local area. I knew straight away that this was the kind of club I wanted to be at.
“I’ve not been perfect in the past. I don’t think anyone is. But you need to learn from your mistakes and develop as a person and player afterwards.
“It’s been a tough few years for myself not being able to play the sport I love on a regular basis. I was suffering from some mental health issues at the time which in turn led to me making a big mistake. I don’t want to use that as an excuse, I accepted and learnt from my punishment.
“In my time away from the game I feel like I’ve matured a lot. I honestly feel I’ve turned the corner, I’ve regained my love for the sport back and I’m ready for the next chapter.
“At a club like Salford, I’ve got the best opportunity to continue to grow as a person by going into the community, talking about the lessons I’ve learnt and promoting Rugby League in a positive manner.
“The sport of Rugby League has been very good to me. The support I received from the RFL, in particular Emma Rosewarne, was brilliant and really helped me on my road to recovery. I’ve now been offered a second chance and it’s up to me to make sure I grab it with both hands.”
Bradford-born Walker began his career with Huddersfield Giants but spent the majority on loan with Barrow Raiders and Swinton Lions. However, it was at Hull Kingston Rovers where the forward made his name while also being a regular for the Scottish National side.
Walker said: “I was playing at the highest and most consistent level I’ve ever competed at four or five years ago and I was loving every minute of it.
“During my time at Hull Kingston Rovers I managed to draw attention from Australia and even spoke to Melbourne Storm, but I decided to see out my contract at Hull. Chris Chester was very supportive of me and that helped massively. Of course, I got the move to St Helens and then eventually Wakefield, both of whom are great Super League clubs.
“I was also in the Scotland National side on a regular basis and for that to slip away because of a silly decision whilst at Wakefield was massively disappointing but it has only made me hungrier now to turn things around and strive to get back to where I want to be.”
Due to his suspension, Walker is yet to train with the Red Devils but has no concerns about catching up on pre-season and returning to the field in top condition.
Walker said: “I know I’ve a lot of work to do. I’ve not been able to train but once I’m allowed to get back on the field regularly.
“I know the Head Strength and Conditioning – Greg Brown – from my time with Swinton and I know he will get the best out of me physically. I’ll be pushing myself further than I have before to ensure I’m ready for my first game back whenever that may be.”
Adam Walker will be available to play for the Red Devils in March.
Salford Red Devils return to action for the first time in almost four months on Saturday as they clash with local rivals Swinton Lions at the The Salford Stadium, 1pm kick-off. Tickets are available at the The Salford Stadium, over the phone and online HERE.

Tickets | Pre-Season friendlies against Swinton and Wigan on sale

Salford Red Devils can confirm that tickets for our pre-season friendless against Swinton Lions and Wigan Warriors are now available to purchase.
 You can buy your tickets for either game from the The Salford Stadium Club Ticket Office, over the phone on 0161 786 1570 or by simply visiting our eticketing site, HERE.
Salford Red Devils will face Swinton Lions on Saturday 12th January at the The Salford Stadium, 1pm kick-off. Wigan Warriors will then visit the The Salford Stadium on Sunday 20th January, 2pm kick-off.
Our fixture against Swinton will be your first chance to see the Red Devils in action since last season while new signings such as Ken Sio, Adam Lawton and Gil Dudson could all debut.
You will be able to purchase tickets for our two pre-season friendlies at Sunday’s Season Ticket Collection afternoon by visiting the The Salford Stadium Ticket Office or going to the The Salford Stadium Reception.
Please note that only the West Stand and 1873 Club will be open for both of our pre-season friendlies.
Ticket prices for both games are as follows:
Adult: £10 
Concession: £5
Adult (VIP): £15
Concession (VIP): £10
Under 6: FREE
 
2019 Season Tickets are still available to purchase and can be bought at the The Salford Stadium Club Ticket Office, over the phone on 0161 786 1570 or by clicking HERE. Please remember if you wish to pay via Direct Debit you must visit the The Salford Stadium or phone 0161 786 1570.

Salford Red Devils to host local rivals Swinton Lions in pre-season

Salford Red Devils can confirm we will face local rivals Swinton Lions in a pre-season friendly on Saturday 12th January, 1pm kick-off.
The Red Devils hosted the Lions in pre-season last year and are delighted to welcome them back to the The Salford Stadium again in 2019.
Director of Rugby and Operations, Ian Blease, said: “We’re excited to host Swinton for the second consecutive season.
“A big factor in us welcoming Swinton to the The Salford Stadium again was the success of last year’s fixture which saw us renew the rivalry. We’re hoping this fixture can become a bit of a community day and event for all the fans.
“There are a lot of ties between the Club’s and it really is a special fixture which is important to the City of Salford and surrounding areas.
“Of course, this will be the first opportunity for fans to see some of our new signings in action. I hope the fans of both Salford and Swinton turn out in force for our opening game of 2019.”
Ticket details for the game will be confirmed in due course.
Salford Red Devils will also take on current Betfred Super League champions Wigan Warriors in pre-season at the The Salford Stadium on Sunday 20th January. Click here for more details.

Squad | Levy Nzoungou joins Swinton on loan

Salford Red Devils forward Levy Nzoungou has joined Betfred Championship side Swinton Lions on a one-month loan deal. 
Nzoungou has spent time on loan with the Lions earlier in the season appearing twice for Swinton against Halifax and Toulouse. The French forward made his Betfred Super League debut last month against Wigan Warriors at the DW Stadium.
Levy has also featured for Whitehaven and dual-registration partners Oldham in Betfred League One so far this season.
Nzoungou will be in line to appear in each of Swinton’s upcoming Betfred Championship fixtures against  Halifax, London Broncos and Dewsbury Rams.
Levy Nzoungou is proudly sponsored by Payroll Central UK.  
Tickets for our next home game against Widnes Vikings are available at the Club Ticket Office, over the phone on 0161 786 1570 or online HERE. Purchase yours now and support the lads as they go in search of a crucial two points in the Betfred Super League.

Dual-Registration/Loan Watch | Daniel Murray in action for Oldham

Salford Red Devils prop-forward Daniel Murray featured this weekend for dual-registration partners Oldham RLFC in a 32-18 victory over Keighley Cougars at the Vestacare Stadium. 
The Roughyeds raced into a 16-0 lead against the Cougars but the Yorkshiremen pulled it back to 16-14 heading into the interval. However, a dominant second half display saw Oldham run out comfortable winners.
Wakefield loanee Lee Kershaw scored twice alongside tries from Dave Eccleston, Kieran Gill and former Red Devil Liam Bent. Murray was in the thick of the action down the middle for Oldham.
Meanwhile, Gavin Bennion and Levy Nzoungou where both in action for Betfred Championship side Swinton Lions as they fell to a 18-12 defeat at the hands of Halifax RLFC.
Andy Thornley put Swinton in the lead early on before Chester Butler had put the hosts within two points. Marcus Webb’s 50th minute try furthered Swinton’s lead but late tries from Conor McGrath and a second from Steve Tyrer sealed the victory for Halifax. Tyrer had also begun the Halifax comeback midway through the second half.
Swinton Lions Head Coach and former Red Devil Stuart Littler said: “Levy [Nzoungou] is a handful. Him and Gav [Bennion] set the game and took us forward. He’s a big guy.”
Swinton welcome Toulouse Olympique next weekend with both Gavin Bennion and Levy Nzoungou available and you can watch this game completely free of charge with the Lions allowing free entry for any fans wishing to attend.

Dual-Reg/Loan Watch | Swinton Lions 18-19 Sheffield Eagles

Salford Red Devils forward Gavin Bennion featured for Swinton Lions in a thrilling 18-19 loss to Sheffield Eagles yesterday afternoon.
Bennion joined the Lions on loan last week along with prop-forward Levy Nzoungou. The Welsh international has spent time on loan with Swinton in both 2013 and 2014 and was named at prop for this weekend’s fixture.
Chris Hankinson put Swinton in front via a penalty goal, but Ben Blackmore replied with a try to put Sheffield ahead. Bennion was in the thick of the action and found himself being held up midway through the first half as he looked to restore the hosts lead.
It was Sheffield who went into the break in control, however. Blackmore intercepted a Swinton attack before racing away. The Eagles scored first in the second-half through Illies Macani to further their lead.
Tries from Craig Mullen and Chris Hankinson saw Swinton draw level at 18-18 heading into the final stages of the game. However, it wasn’t to be for the Lions as a Simon Brown drop-goal with two minutes left unfortunately inflicted a defeat on Stuart Littler’s side.
Both Bennion and Nzoungou will be available for the Lions as they face Halifax RLFC at the MBi Shay.

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