If Salford are going to make the play-offs, this is absolutely the kind of game they have to win.
Catalans away is notoriously a tough place to go but Salford cannot afford to drop points at this stage of the season and there may be a real opening for them to upset the apple cart in France this week.
This is as the Dragons have been very inconsistent recently as they deal with a high number of absentees. There’s certainly a real chance for the Reds to keep winning and make a real statement in the play-off race.
Salford have lost Greg Burke, Shane Wright and Harvey Livett this week. They have recalled hooker and loose-forward Amir Bourouh to what is only a 19-man squad as the Red Devils again have to plough ahead with the bare bones.
Making matters worse for the injury ravaged Dragons, impact forward Sam Kasiano has picked up a one game ban this week. Fortunately for the Dragons, they welcome back skipper Ben Garcia, Mickael Goudemand, Fouad Yaha and Gil Dudson.
Match Preview – Key Battles:
Sam Tomkins vs Ryan Brierley: Two men who started their careers as electric halfbacks and are now experienced fullbacks who bring the cutting edge of a stand-off to the number one role collide in France this week. You’d fancy them both to come away with some major offensive involvements.
Tom Davies vs Ken Sio: Last year’s Dream Team wingers do battle after differing 2022s. Sio has continued his fine work from last season setting a new record for Super League tries in a season from a Salford player whilst Davies has struggled with injury. Two brilliant wingers with different styles, it’ll be a pleasure to see them share the field.
Mitchell Pearce vs Brodie Croft: It’s been unnoticed how dangerous Mitchell Pearce has been this season notching tries quite frequently. Thus, it’ll be interesting to see him against a fellow NRL halfback whose threat has been well documented in the brilliant Brodie Croft.
Where the game will be won and lost:
Salford have proven they can come up against the physically big teams and stretch them and play through them, and they’ll have to do the same here. Oddly, the French heat and the dry conditions may actually favour them more than the home side. If they can execute their brilliant to watch game plan again here, a famous win may be forthcoming.
Score Prediction: Catalans Dragons 20-28 Salford Red Devils