Salford Red Devils vs Catalans Dragons: Team news, match preview and score prediction

What a difference a week makes.

The week before Magic, both Salford and Catalans were riding high with season best wins. The Red Devils battled back against Warrington to win by eight despite trailing by 10 with 10 minutes to. Meanwhile, Catalans downed the Champions.

However, neither really appeared to be close to their opponents in Newcastle hitting a major stumbling block at St James’ Park adding more pressure to this fixture.

Team News

Salford will have to do without Sitaleki Akauola and Tyler Dupree this week but will be able to call upon new loan signing Ben Hellewell in what is sure to be a boost for Paul Rowley’s side. Once again he’s only been able to name a 19-man squad but Joe Burgess again features hoping to return. It has also been suggested this week that Harvey Livett may have played his last game for the club.

Catalans have Dean Whare, Julian Bousquet and Sam Kasiano are all back for the Dragons  but Michael McIlorum and Dylan Napa are still suspended. The likes of Tom Davies are injured and joined by Ben Garcia after he nearly lost an ear last week.

Match Preview – Key Battles:

Ryan Brierley vs Sam Tomkins: These two are very similar. They both know their way to the tryline and are also capable of being creative given their history in the halves. Either could conjure up some skill to win this game should it prove to be a close one.

Brodie Croft vs Mitchell Pearce: Mitchell Pearce has surprised plenty this year with how often he scores in Super League whilst Brodie Croft has also shown his attacking menace due to his ability to carve through defences. So the tussle between these two former NRL stars should be fascinating.

Where the game will be won and lost:

With so many key players missing in the Catalans pack, the Dragons’ usual dominance over the middle may be absent. Warrington showed the damage that can be done to the Dragons in this situation moving the ball around tiring them out which will suit the Red Devils. and their superb ball movement. So, an upset? Perhaps.

Score Prediction: Salford Red Devils 26-20 Catalans Dragons

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