England international Andy Ackers has made the move across the Pennines from Salford Red Devils to Leeds Rhinos, joining the Headingley club alongside 2022 Man of Steel winner Brodie Croft.
The rumour mill had been working at full speed in regards to Croft to Headingley with Rohan Smith’s side desperate for a half-back following the departure of Blake Austin and Aiden Sezer.
However the move for Ackers was more of a surprise given Smith’s trust in young hooker Jarrod O’Connor, who Ackers will now help guide and develop as the club’s presumed starting nine, having been decorated with that shirt number upon signing.
It’s a huge coup for Leeds but also devasting for Salford to lose two of their ever so consistent spine, but in a letter sent from Salford to fans who had bought ownership stakes when the club called for investment earlier this year, it’s been revealed that Ackers requested the move to Leeds.
A section of the letter, shared on X, read: “Andy was asked to stay; however, he has expressed his desire to make the move to Leeds. We thank them for their efforts and sincerely wish them both the very best of luck in the future.”
Ackers has himself now commented, sharing a message to teammates and fans of both Salford and Leeds via Instagram.
“Firstly I’d just like to thank my teammates and the fans for all the support they have shown me during my time at Salford.
“I have met some great people and you have been incredible for an amazing 3 years that I have loved.
“Id also like to thank Head coach Paul Rowley who has been integral in my development at the club and over the last 10 years of my career. I’m grateful for the friend & coach he is.
“Me and my family are delighted to be joining the Leeds Rhinos for the next 3 years and cant wait to get started.
“Im looking forward to meeting my new teammates and Rohan Smith and giving 100% helping the Rhinos to be as successful as possible!
“A Massive Thank You to Distinct agency for making the process smooth and professional. Thanks, Ackers”
He will soon link up with the Rhinos for pre-season having not been selected to Shaun Wane’s England squad to face Tonga.