Exclusive: Ex-St Helens man Mark Flanagan reveals who he thinks will win Super League Grand Final

This weekend we’re all looking forward to two exciting semi-finals.

On Friday night Wigan host Leeds at the DW Stadium in a repeat of the inaugural Grand Final with a place at this year’s show piece event up for grabs.

Then on Saturday, it’s a repeat of the 2019 Grand Final as Champions St Helens look to continue down the road to a fourth consecutive Super League title – a recording breaking feat toppling the Leeds side of 2007-09.

As for Salford, they’re striving for a fairytale akin to the 2019 season but this time with a happy ending.

All four would make deserving Champions and both games are hard to call, but former St Helens and Salford man Mark Flanagan has had a stab at predicting which of the four will come away with the trophy.

Flanagan knows all about what it takes to lift the Super League title doing so back with St Helens in 2014 defying the odds with a number of key injuries and losing their final natural halfback in Lance Hohaia during the first two minutes of the decider.

First thing’s first, Flanagan thinks Saints will have just about enough to beat Salford despite missing the likes of Alex Walmsley: “The best game breaker for either team being out – Brodie Croft and Alex Walmsley – is big. I think Saints will win, I think if Brodie would have been fit I’d have gone the other way.

“He’s had such a big impact on Salford’s attack and the way they attack, very expansive, the play wide, they’re very flamboyant bringing the centres and backs into the game, but without Brodie they’ll struggle to play that game plan and that’s what would really worry Saints.

“Saints have been there and done it for a long time. They’ve got big experience in those games and they’ll be able to contain Salford a lot more without Brodie Croft.

“There’s not as much experience in the squad as in previous years because they’ve got quite an injury toll do Saints but I think Saints just.”

He also thinks whoever wins that semi-final will go all the way and win the Grand Final against either Wigan or Leeds meaning he is tipping Saints to retain the trophy: “I think whoever wins this, they’ll go all the way.”

That said, Flanagan would like to see Salford come away with the trophy: “The more I’ve thought about it, I want Salford to taste glory more than I do Saints. It would be great in history for them to do four on the bounce but I’d love to see Salford fans who have waited so long to see success, I’d love to see them taste some silverware.

“I’d love to see them win, it would be great for the game. We’ve had only four teams win Super League in the history of the competition and over the space of 25 years that is not enough teams.

“You would have got good odds on Salford winning Super League before Warrington a few years ago but now that seems very likely because Salford are such a well-run club now.

“I think it would be great for the game if Salford could win it, they have the players and it looks like they have the belief so I’m hoping, as I think all the neutrals are, that they can go all the way and win the Grand Final.”