Leeds Rhinos: Here's what could be on boss Richard Agar's agenda ahead of Super League clash with Salford Red Devils
After successive defeats by Betfred Super League leaders Catalans Dragons, Leeds Rhinos need to get back to winning ways against Salford Red Devils.
Leeds are now into the second half of their league campaign and have lost more games than they’ve won, so another slip-up would be a huge blow to their top-six hopes.
Here’s what could be on coach Richard Agar’s agenda ahead of Friday’s home match.
1: Ending second half collapses. In the opening 40 minutes of their last three games, Rhinos have scored 56 points and conceded 16. In the second halves, that aggregate is two scored and 53 conceded. How does anyone explain that statistic? Whether it’s down to fatigue, losing concentration or the fact they’ve been up against good opposition, it is unacceptable and clearly Agar and his players need to get to the bottom of it this week.
2: Aidan Sezer. Leeds’ long search for a play-maker to replace Rob Lui - or probably more accurately, Danny McGuire - finally ended, they hope, when the Australian half-back signed for 2022 and 2023. Currently injured, the Huddersfield Giants star has vast experience in the NRL and was a Man of Steel nominee last season. The proof is in the pudding, but Agar and director of rugby Kevin Sinfield can feel satisfied with a job well done.
3: Levi Edwards. The 17-year-old, who can play at centre or in the second-row, joined Batley Bulldogs on loan to gain first team experience and bagged two tries in a man of the match performance against Dewsbury Rams last week. He needs to keep doing it, but has given Agar something to think about.
4: Discipline. Leeds need to be better in that department. They conceded too many penalties in both games against Catalans and the previous meeting with Salford featured two red cards and a brace of sin-binnings. Agar will be stressing the need to keep calm if any ill-feeling remains.
5: Harry Newman. Agar will be excited about what the England centre can add to Rhinos after recovering from his broken leg. The 21-year-old was very good in his first game back and will only get better with more game time.
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