Brodie Croft was incredible for Salford Red Devils in 2022 and was one of the key reasons as to why they made the playoffs and scored the second most points in the league.
The Australian playmaker was reminiscent of another former Salford Man of Steel, Jackson Hastings, as he strung passes together and helped form a spine that included Marc Sneyd and Ryan Brierley.
Brierley has been speaking to The Sportsman Rugby League Youtube channel when revealing what made Salford so special in 2022.
After all the Red Devils took the leap from 11th place to sixth and winning a playoff game against the highly touted Huddersfield Giants.
The full-back said: “It sounds really daft and a lot of people will claim that their team is dead close or tight knit, but how close are you? This team I don’t see any chinks in it, I’ve never experienced that before.
“All the teams I’ve been in has always had a little clique here or there but this team there’s a level of trust that you can’t really buy. So when we talk about Salford spending the least then I think we make it up in how tight we are as a group.”
Brierley had previously spoke about the side’s lack of spending being counteracted by brilliant coaching from Paul Rowley and a brave style of play, as reported here.
However he went on further to add about how Brodie Croft transformed in the team’s relaxed and friendly environment.
“There’s no super stars and no egos. If you look at our Man of Steel, Brodie Croft, he gets hammered the most out of everyone, he gets the most grief. I love that about our team and it’s such a relaxed environment.
“People can be themselves, Brodie Croft came in as a super star from Melbourne and Brisbane and all he needed to do was relax. He came quite stiff and uptight but when he relaxed he became such a better player.
“That environment forces you to be unapologetically yourself which is something I love.”
Croft will have some challenge to retain his Man of Steel award ,considering only Paul Sculthorpe has achieved that feat, but 25 assists last season went a long way to earning him the honour and with the same core that performed so well in 2022 the Red Devils will be out to shock Super League again.