Leeds Rhinos: YEP Jury give their verdicts

Mitch Achurch.
Mitch Achurch.
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Our YEP Jury have their say on the defeat at Warrington and the task ahead against Catalans Dragons

KATIE BURROWS

Last Friday was another case of us getting off to a great start by being the first team to score, only for the opposition to return the favour and then go on to absolutely thrash us.

I genuinely thought we were well in the game at half-time, and hoped we might turn things around, but, as with many other times this year, it wasn’t to be.

We’re a long way from being anything like the team that went 12-0 down at Hull FC last year yet were able to come back and win the game convincingly.

How many times are we going to throw away a good start due to our terrible defence and below-par discipline?

You’d think after four months of fixtures we might have something new to say about our performances, but, unfortunately, it’s more of the same every week.

I’m sure the Championship’s current top four of Leigh, London, Batley and Bradford will be loving the idea of potentially playing us this year and, given our recent form, I reckon they’ll all be thinking they have a decent chance of beating us!

I feel that any attempt to justify our current situation comes across as excuses and, while we have been terrible for much of the season, I think we have been extremely unlucky with injuries – to say that has not had an impact would be foolish.

It’s not possible to rebuild when three-quarters of your back-line have spent most of the year on the sidelines, and it feels like we’re getting fresh injuries after every game.

Last week’s injury update was bleak, and with very few first-choice players sounding close to being match fit, the news that now Zak Hardaker and Mitch Achurch are missing, things won’t be improving any time soon.

On to this week’s fixture and Catalans are having a good year. They’ll be sitting in third heading into tomorrow’s game. When we faced them back in March, it was one of our narrower defeats so maybe we can come out on top this time, although I’m very doubtful.

Two games in as many weeks at Headingley: let’s make the home advantage count and get behind our team; they need it now more than ever.

ELIZABETH HAWKHEAD

Woeful Leeds! The season started badly but, in recent weeks, we have played worse than ever.

At least in the first half of the season Leeds competed for the majority of the games and were losing by just a try or two.

In the last few games, despite scoring first, they have capitulated and the games have been all but lost by half-time.

It is embarrassing. The top teams are making games against Leeds look like training sessions.

Leeds lack structure and a game plan and it stems from having little or no defence.

We are a group of individuals and rugby is a team game!

In a team everyone needs to know, and fulfil, their own personal role for the good of the whole.

Leeds look as if no-one knows what they are there for.

In the most basic form, rugby starts by defending your line and stopping the opposition scoring.

Leeds need to get back to basics. They need to find forwards that can compete at Super League level and take control of the midfield.

Rumours are rife about ‘off the pitch’ issues and, whether they are true or not, one thing is certain, confidence is rock-bottom and the rot needs to stop.

With a strong Catalans team visiting tomorrow evening, I am struggling to remain positive.

LUKE CROSSFIELD

For the fourth week in a row we get off to a flyer then once our defence gets breached the floodgates open.

We were very lucky to get 18 points with some suspect refereeing decisions going our way.

With our record at Warrington in recent years, I didn’t expect us to get the victory. However, I didn’t see much fight until Brad Singleton and Ashton Sims squared up.

After watching the Bradford vs Leigh game last Saturday at the summer bash we really need to get some form and momentum before the Middle-8s.

At this moment in time I really think they could turn us over.

We really need to start getting some form before the Middle-8s creep up on us.

ANDREW RICHARDSON

For the third week in a row Leeds were embarrassed by another humiliating loss.

Yet again Leeds hung on in the first half and then were simply out-classed in the second. This week the Rhinos take on high-flying Catalans in what looks set to be an almost-certain loss.

THOMAS LAWRENCE

Over May Leeds Rhinos have conceded 180 points – an average of 45 per game.

Surely extra time must be put in to rectify this problem, as it just seems like Leeds can’t stop other teams crossing the line at the moment.

Things really have changed since the start of the 2014 season, when Leeds were conceding 10 points a game on average.

Amendments need to be made, and things don’t get any easier as Catalans Dragons come to Headingley tomorrow night.

It’s time now to just focus on getting the squad fit for the Middle-8s and try to bag a few wins before then to boost confidence.

The Super-8s is just beyond this current Leeds Rhinos squad.

ANDREW SUTCLIFFE

Again scoring first last week did us no favours as a second successive second-half capitulation saw us soundly beaten by Warrington. Injuries to Hardaker and Achurch have added to our problems. On to Catalans at home and the prospect of more painful viewing. Unless the players solve the porous defence I can’t see us winning.

Liam Sutcliffe

Liam Sutcliffe is relishing chance to compete for honours with Leeds Rhinos