Yesterday saw the beginning of the IMG era of rugby league with teams graded and scored based on a number of metrics including both on and off-field matters, and whilst Leeds Rhinos topped the charts and were the highest Grade A team, Salford Red Devils ranked eighth and as the highest Grade B team.
IMG and the RFL aim to have a Super League comprising entirely Grade A clubs but for the time being it will be all Grade A teams and those high Grade Bs to make up the 12 team division.
Salford Red Devils rank highest of those Grade B teams with a score of 13.8 from a possible 20, just 1.2 points shy of the Grade A 15 point threshold.
Whilst the overall totals for each club’s grading has been made public, the individual scores for each of the five pillars has not and is at the club’s discretion.
So far only Hunslet and Bradford Bulls have released this data but Salford Red Devils have now become the third team to do so, and the first from Super League.
They announced the news via their social media along with their statement from the initial grading reaction.
The five pillars of grading are Fandom, Performance, Finance, Stadium and Community.
Salford scored 4.15 from 5 on fandom, 3.43 from 5 on performance, 2.15 from 4.5 on finance, 1.83 from 3 on stadium and 2.25 from 2.5 on community.
This was confirmed on their Twitter with the following statement attached.
“RL Commercial has published the illustrative IMG Grades ahead of the 2024 season, with Salford Red Devils scoring 8th amongst 35 professional clubs.
“Membership of the Betfred Super League in 2025 will be determined by the top 12 teams in the 2024 rankings, which will be announced at the culmination of the 2024 season.
“Salford Red Devils currently score 13.8 (max 20), the 8th highest score posted by professional clubs.”
Paul King, Managing Director of Salford Red Devils said;
“We welcome the news today with the illustrative grading placing us 8th amongst all Clubs.
“We are broadly in line with where we thought we would be at this point, and are under no illusion as to the amount of hard work that must continue to be done over the next 12 months for us to attain the Grade A that we know we can.
“There are some really positive projects in the pipeline, and with everybody’s continued support, we’re confident that we can secure our position in Super League.”