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“We need some strike out there” – Super League coach reveals side are in the market for an outside back

Tom Johnstone and Tom Davies

Catalans Dragons came within 80 minutes of a first Grand Final victory just over a month ago but the French club are prepping for another title charge, with head coach Steve McNamara revealing the key area he plans to strengthen in order to go one better.

The Dragons have now made two trips to Old Trafford, both unsuccessful, however they’re clearly a side who have forced their way into the elite category of Super League and they look set to stay there too.

Having lifted the Challenge Cup in 2018 the team from Perpignan have kicked on, making the playoffs in four of those five seasons whilst also lifting the League Leaders Shield.

If they’re to continue to uphold their status as one of the best in Super League then they’ll need to overcome a huge turnover of players going into the 2024 season.

The Dragons have lost three quarters of their spine losing both veterans Sam Tomkins and Mitchell Pearce to retirement, whilst the exciting Tyrone May has swapped the south of France for Humberside as he’s made the switch to Hull KR.

Catalans have also lost the likes of Mickael Goudemand, Tiaki Chan and Matt Whitley from their forward pack whilst one of their best signings from 2023, Adam Keighran, is heading to join reigning champions Wigan Warriors.

As such there are plenty of faces needing replacing and they’ve looked within Super League for some of those men with Chris Satae and Theo Fages both joining from Hull FC and Huddersfield Giants respectively.

McNamara has recently spoken to BBC Humberside explaining the club’s situation, having also landed NRL trio Tariq Sim, Jayden Nikorima and Bayley Sironen, meaning there is a lack of quota spots left.

Speaking to BBC Humberside, McNamara said: “I wish we had three (quota spots) but now we’ve got one, so we’ll be patient. We’re looking for another outside back, that’s what we’re looking for. I feel we need some strike out there; but we’ll sit on our heels for now and we’ll see what comes up.”

The Dragons will be on the hunt for silverware last year after their Old Trafford heartbreak, and McNamara will be hoping a potential new addition to the backline could help them this campaign.

It remains to be seen who will join their ranks in the outside backs but should the new arrival bring the quality that 2023 recruits Keighran and Man of Steel nominee Tom Johnstone did, then the Dragons could be set for another big title charge.

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