Salford Red Devils v Warrington Wolves: Preview

Wigan Warriors 16-31 Salford Red Devils

Having been so impressive in their World Club series win over Brisbane, Warrington were brought back down to earth last time out in the Super League.

An impressive display from Castleford saw the Wolves taste defeat for the second time this season, and they will be eager to bounce back as quickly as possible when they take on Salford this Saturday.

The Wolves showed some defensive frailties in the 30-22 defeat to the Tigers, conceding four tries in just nine minutes, and Tony Smith will be wary about the attacking threat that the Red Devils will pose to his side.

Salford were unlucky not to earn a point against Leeds last time out, as a controversial Liam Sutcliffe try late in the game gave the Rhinos a 20-14 victory.

The Red Devils did create plenty of problems at Headingley, and in Gareth O’Brien, they have a man in form.

With three tries to his name already this season, O’Brien handed the club a huge boost this week by committing his long-term future to Salford, putting pen to paper on a three-year contract.

A win over Warrington would be the perfect way for the full-back to celebrate his new deal, but he won’t be joined by new signing Todd Carney for Saturday’s game.

Carney is still working on his match fitness but head coach Ian Watson is confident the half-back will be in contention in the next few weeks.

Winger Justin Carney also misses out once again as he serves the final part of his two-match ban after being found guilty of coming into contact with a match official against Huddersfield.

Warrington have been hampered by injuries so far this season, with the likes of Stefan Ratchford, skipper Chris Hill and Ben Currie still on the sidelines.

Winger Kevin Perry remains out with an ankle injury while a hamstring problem sees prop George King also miss this weekend’s trip to Salford.

Coach Tony Smith is hopeful that Ratchford and Hill will be back in action soon, with the trip to Leigh Centurions pencilled in for their return to the first team.

One player who has made a return to the Wolves squad is full-back Kurt Gidley.

He has recovered from the virus that ruled him out of the defeat to Castleford while full-back Jack Johnson also makes it in the Wolves squad.

Saturday’s match should be an intriguing one as Salford have showed glimpses of real quality going forward while Warrington have a great record against the Red Devils, unbeaten in their last seven encounters.

As good as Salford have been in scoring points, they have been leaking them as well and that is something that the Wolves can exploit.

A high scoring game could be on the cards at the AJ Bell stadium and Warrington’s class should give them the edge on Saturday afternoon.

Salford Squad: Walne, Kopczak, O’Brien, G Griffin, Johnson, Bibby, Jones, Wood, Sa’u, Welham, Brining, Tasi, Mossop, Tomkins, Flanagan, Dobson, Krasniqi, Lui, Lannon.

Warrington Squad: Atkins, Blythe, Brown, Clark, Cooper, Crosby, Dwyer, Evans, Gidley, Hughes, Johnson, Lineham, Livett, Patton, Russell, Savelio, Sims, Westerman, Westwood.

Score prediction: Salford 24-30 Warrington