Salford Red Devils fell to defeat in their season opener against St Helens last night in head coach Richard Marshall’s first competitive game in charge of the club.
It was far from the start that Marshall would have wanted to make, losing 29-6 in an underwhelming performance and one that will be leaving him with a lot of work to do before their next Super League encounter against Hull.
Marshall held nothing back in his post-match comments and was clearly not happy with how his side performed against last season’s Super League winners.
Marshall felt that individual errors were ultimately what prevented Salford from getting on the front foot, saying: “Yeah, it looked that way. When we did we shot ourselves in the foot, I didn’t think we capitalised on our try in the second half.
“I think the game was still in the balance at that point. I think if we’d been a bit more resilient with the ball and a bit more disciplined, we could have got a couple more scores and made it a contest.”
However, he did go onto say that there was some encouragement to take from the fact his side were still in the game with an hour gone.
He said: “We have some very resolute defence on our hands, we stopped a handful of tries, we had some real bright sparks in that, I thought Taylor was outstanding, I thought his work rate in and around the middle and what he did with the ball was brilliant.
“Young Jack Wells came off the bench and I thought picked us up but just not enough, not consistent enough, we’ll take some learning from that though and we’re a new team.”
Whilst there were some positives from Salford’s attacking play, Marshall believes they could have put more pressure on in the closing stages of the match when the game was still up for grabs.
He said: “We could improve in that area, I think we had one or two chances in the first-half where we had two on ones on the edge we just didn’t quite execute for whatever reason.
“There were some things that we worked on that really worked, we looked really effective with the ball.
“Going back, we scored that try in that second half and I think we had 14 or 15 plays of ball after that so I think for the last 30 minutes of the game there we’ve not really touched the ball a lot and then obviously we’re in survial mode a little bit.”
Whilst the result wasn’t what Salford would have wanted to start off the new campaign, there was some encouragment to take into their game next weekend, where bouncing back with a win will be important.