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How a Warrington Wolves team would line up if they had kept hold of academy/reserve-trained players

Warrington’s academy has produced countless top talents over the last decades are so. This article will look at how Warrington might lineup if they could choose from former academy players that are no longer at the club.

1. Gareth O’Brien

O’Brien made his first team debut for Warrington, pairing Lee Briers in the halves. He showed his quality as a goalkicker, converting almost 100 goals for Warrington before departing to Salford on a permanent basis in 2016. O’Brien converted almost entirely to a fullback at Salford, enjoying two strong seasons at the club, including the famous Million Pound Game drop goal. In 2018 he signed for Toronto and then Castleford, where he currently plays.

2. Rhys Williams

Despite being born in Wales, Williams rose through the ranks at Warrington, where he ended up making 29 first team appearances, scoring 21 tries. He left Warrington for a brief spell in Australia before returning to England, joining the London Broncos. After registering 100 tries for London, Williams has been picked up by Salford, where his highlight has been a long range try at Wembley.

3. Rhys Evans 

Another Welsh international, Evans made the move to Warrington after being spotted by scouts whilst playing in South Wales. After three years in Warrington’s academy, he broke into the first team in 2010. Evans remained at the club for a further 7 years and made over 100 appearances around multiple loan spells.

4. Harvey Livett

Livett is able to play both second-row and centre, which makes him such a useful player to have. He was part of the 2015 England Academy squad that played France, and two years later got the nod to make his first team debut. The 24-year-old left Warrington to join Salford Red Devils ahead of the 2021 season, where he has been one of a few positives to be taken from their season thus far.

5. Will Dagger

Dagger was brought up from Warrington’s academy at just 18 years of age back in 2017. He also earnt caps for England at U-16s level, and looked an outstanding prospect. Since reaching the top flight, he has made few appearances, however his best performances have come in a Hull KR shirt. Unfortunately, Dagger was unable to maintain a regular spot and has subsequently been loaned to Featherstone.

6. Dec Patton

Patton showed huge promise at Warrington, both at academy and first team level. He played in four finals for Warrington, his only victory coming in the 2019 Challenge Cup final, in which he was the Wire’s only recognised halfback. After a disappointed 2020 it was announced that Patton would join Salford in 2021.

7. Morgan Smith

 When Smith first broke onto the scene at Warrington, there was huge expectation put on him. His agility and kicking game meant that people expected him to flourish into a top talent immediately. Unfortunately, it did not quite work out straight away, and he moved to London Broncos in 2019. Since then, Smith has signed for York.

8. Daniel Murray 

Murray was hugely popular in Warrington’s academy, winning U-19s player of the year in 2015. The following year he signed for Salford, and debuted for them in 2017. He spent time on loan in year he spent at Salford before signing for Hull KR after impressing on loan. Murray signed for Halifax ahead of the 2021 season. 

9. Brad Dwyer 

Despite being at Warrington for 6 years, he made just 88 appearances due to his multiple loan spells away from the club. He left Warrington for Leeds in 2018, where he has proven himself as a top-level hooker. Dwyer makes up for his lack of size with his high energy, evasive runs from dummy half.

10. Ben Evans 

The twin of Rhys, Ben made the move to Warrington to join their academy to further his career. He played just 21 games for Warrington before moving on. Much of his career has been spent in the Championship, recently playing for London, Toulouse and currently Bradford. 

11. Tyrone McCarthy 

McCarthy came up through Warrington’s academy back in the 2000s, making his senior debut in 2009. He would even appear in the Challenge Cup Final the same year. He stayed at Warrington for a further four years before moving to Northern Pride, Hull KR and then St. George Illawarra. McCarthy returned to England joining Salford Red Devils, where he would feature in a loss at the 2019 Grand Final. He was released by the club in 2020, and now plays for Leigh.

12. Pat Moran 

At just 23, Moran has already been at five clubs since leaving Warrington. This experience will be perfect for helping him return to the top flight. He was picked up by London midway through this season and will be looking to impress some bigger clubs while playing for a top championship side.

13. George King

Unlike many on this list, King made lots of appearances for Warrington. He made his first team debut in 2014 at just 19 years of age. He played in all four of Warrington’s finals in 2016 and 2018, ending up on the wrong side of the result in all of them. King signed for Wakefield in 2019, and then Hull KR the following year.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Alex Chicken

    June 30, 2021 at 9:42 am

    They are all Wire academy graduates. Hardly any reserve grade when they were coming through

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