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“We need our luck to change” – Agar still confident Leeds can make the play-offs

Leeds Rhinos Head Coach Richard Agar bemoaned his side’s missed opportunities as Leeds’ winning run was halted by league leaders Catalans Dragons.

The Rhinos attempted to stretch their streak to five matches in front of their home fans and led 18-8 at half-time but the visitors had other ideas.

The Dragons ran in 18 unanswered second half points to secure their eighth consecutive win but Agar commented that his side should have been further ahead at the break.

He said, “I thought Catalans were a ‘mixed bag’ for us. I thought we had tonnes of energy in the first half.

“We were creating, breaking the line and we definitely had a couple more chances to score, one that we should have 100% put away and I think that would have taken the game right into the balance.

“I thought first half, there was some self-infliction in there. I was disappointed with the try we conceded. I thought at times we looked as if we were making things up as we were going along but I did think we caused them plenty of problems.

“I honestly thought we should have gone in at the break at least one score further ahead.”

However, Agar did praise Catalans for their sheer quality and the manner in which they downed his side.

He added, “As for the second half, I will applaud the opposition. We can look to our schedule and work load.

“There is a factor in that during preparation and in some individuals that were a bit ‘gassed’.

“Before the contest, we did say that the Dragons were really methodical and they lived up to that today.

“I thought they controlled the ball with some big plays. The 40-20 was crucial and when they got a couple of chances they executed really well.

“At the same time, there were a couple of poor elements to what we were doing in that period but we could not break that cycle.

“We did not have the energy, nor the field position to change the momentum to get ourselves back into the game.”

However, despite the loss, Agar remains adamant his side will still firmly challenge for the play-offs by the end of the season.

He said, “There is plenty of belief in that dressing room that we can still make an impact on the play-offs.

“We will need our luck to change at some point. We are going to need to get some continuity and a consistent line-up on the field.

“I think when you look around the competition, the teams that are doing well, who had a good pre-season and the guys who are a bit less disrupted too.

“We had a lot to contend with as we know. We are quite undeterred. It is all about getting into the top six and as high as we can.

“I think there has been enough signs in us that we can do that and the second half tonight might have been a bridge too far for our line-up but I do not think I have a changing room in there that does not believe we will finish outside the six.”

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