ENGLAND FORWARD Brett Ferres says his future is up in the air, but he hopes to stay at Leeds Rhinos.
Ferres joined Rhinos from Huddersfield Giants on a one-year deal last December and has yet to re-sign.
Asked what his situation is for 2017, Ferres – who misses tonight’s game at Hull due to a foot injury – admitted: “I am not sure yet.
“I signed a one-year contract and I have really enjoyed my time here.
“It has not been the ideal situation season-wise and it hasn’t gone to plan, but the club is fantastic.
“Everything about it has been first-class, the players have been great and the fans are fantastic here, they welcome you with open arms.
“It has been well received by myself, I am enjoying my time here and hopefully it can continue.”
The future of Rhinos’ entire squad is in the balance as the club face a fight for survival in the middle-eight Qualifiers, against the other teams in Super League’s bottom four and the leading quartet from the Kingstone Press Championship.
Rhinos will need to finish in the top-three of the new competition or win the one-off million pound match between the fourth and fifth-placed teams to secure a top-flight place for 2017.
With only five wins from 22 competitive games this year, including losses to all three of their current bottom-four rivals, Leeds are facing a nervous end to the year.
“We have found ourselves into a very different position to what Leeds Rhinos expect,” admitted Ferres, who made no secret of the fact he joined the club to win trophies.
“It is challenging times, we have obviously got a very tough period ahead of us. It is going to be tough every week and it certainly going to be the hardest 10-game run-in we’ve had for a long time.
“It will test some characters and test some boys out, but I am very confident we will come through it.
“We are playing for our jobs and our livelihoods. That’s the reality.
“We need to win every game. We need to be competitive and we need to keep building our performances up.
“I don’t think we were overly poor at times last week, but a there were a couple of instances when we weren’t good enough and we gave Widnes a sniff.
“Fair credit to them, they stuck in and handled it well and came out with the result.”
After tonight’s trip to Super League leaders Hull, Rhinos end their regular season with a home game against second-placed Wigan Warriors and a trip to likely middle-eights rivals Hull KR.
Ferres reckons three wins would send Leeds into the Qualifiers on a high and he stressed: “We aren’t looking at the eights now, we are looking at Hull and getting our performance right.
“Hopefully if we can play well and get a win we can start moving forward.”
l Whitehaven coach James Coyle is to stand down at the end of the season, the Kingstone Press Championship club have announced.
Former Hunslet Hawks player Coyle, at 30 one of the youngest head coaches in rugby league, is in his second season in charge of the Cumbrian club and is quitting due to business and family commitments.