Salford Red Devils vs St Helens Preview

The Lowdown


  • Salford collapsed in the second half as they were hammered by Leeds at Headingley. The Red Devils were 14 points behind at half-time but ended up losing the game 44-2, failing to score a single try in the game.
  • It's a season that could have gone very differently for Salford having sealed a top four spot at the end of the regular season but losing eight of their last nine league games prevented them from challenging for a semi-final berth.
  • Ian Watson makes just one change to his final squad of the season with Josh Wood replacing George Griffin after he picked up a knock last week.

Head Coach: Ian Watson

Squad: Jake Bibby, Kriss Brining, Niall Evalds, Weller Hauraki, Josh Jones, Craig Kopczak, Ryan Lannon, Rob Lui, Tyrone McCarthy, Ben Murdoch-Masila, Daniel Murray, Gareth O'Brien, Junior Sa'u, Logan Tomkins, Manu Vatuvei, Adam Walne, Jordan Walne, Kris Welham, Josh Wood

Unavailable: Lama Tasi (Knee), Mark Flanagan (Shoulder), Greg Johnson (Hip), Lee Mossop (Injured), Michael Dobson (Injured), George Griffin (Injured), Olsi Krasniqi, Todd Carney


  • St Helens were comfortable victors against Huddersfield last week and with Wigan failing to beat Castleford, Saints' top four hopes were left in their own hands as they head into the final game of the Super 8s.
  • A win against Salford - a team they have beaten in 13 of the last 15 Super League encounters - would ensure St Helens of a semi-final spot.
  • Justin Holbrook has named an unchanged squad with Saints able to boast no injuries. Matty Smith and Kyle Amor could return after missing out last week but Holbrook may stick with a winning side.

Head Coach: Justin Holbrook

Squad: Kyle Amor, Ben Barba, Luke Douglas, Theo Fages, Regan Grace, Morgan Knowles, Jonny Lomax, Tommy Makinson, Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook, Ryan Morgan, Mark Percival, Dominique Peyroux, Danny Richardson, James Roby, Matty Smith, Zeb Taia, Luke Thompson, Alex Walmsley, Jon Wilkin

Unavailable: Tommy Lee, Adam Swift, Jake Spedding, Matty Lees

Analysis - what to expect
The first game of the final round of the Super League season has huge implications on two other games this weekend. There are plenty of potential permutations but the main thing for Saints to focus on is earning the win that will guarantee their spot in the semi-finals. Failing to win would see their hopes hanging by a thread with Hull, Wigan and Wakefield all hoping that Salford can do them a favour. However, that favour may not be forthcoming with Salford heading into this game on the back of a heavy defeat and with just one win in the Super 8s, it would be a surprise if Saints didn't get the job done here.