Leeds Rhinos v St Helens: McDermott keen to set the record straight

Brian McDermott.
Brian McDermott.
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Setting the record straight will be only one of Leeds Rhinos’ motivations when they square up to old rivals St Helens on Monday night.

Boss Brian McDermott admits Rhinos are anxious to make up for the 46-6 drubbing they received at Langtree Park two months ago.

But he stressed they are also want to put their Stobart Super League form right and to build momentum ahead of their Carnegie Challenge Cup semi-final with Wigan Warriors in almost two months’ time.

Rhinos are still smarting from the defeat at Saints in March, which was the heaviest suffered by Leeds since McDermott took over as coach at the start of last season.

“We are talking about the last time,” he conceded. “It wasn’t a great day. They had every reason to be very, very good that day and we had a combination of an off-day and some key people missing.

“We’ve taken that into account, but overall we under-performed and that’s something we want to get right. There’s certain things we want to put right throughout the year and this is one of those.”

Rhinos’ run to the last four of the Challenge Cup has masked the fact they have slipped to eighth in the table after Bradford’s 20-20 draw at Salford.

McDermott accept their league form does need working on. He added: “We have shown already this year what we are capable of.

“But we’ve had some disappointing losses and there are some things we need to address. It’s the time we start to make amends and start to climb back up the ladder.”

After Saints, Rhinos face Bradford Bulls at the Magic Weekend in Manchester before back-to-back clashes with Wigan Warriors and Warrington Wolves.

“We’re conscious of that, we have got some big games coming up,” McDermott said. “They’re all big games leading up to the semi-final.

“We want to go into that with some great recent history of form under our belts.

“This is an important period. One of our goals this year was to be a good team. We have been that sporadically this year, but we have still got a chance of finishing the regular season and looking back and saying we have been a good team.”

Matt Parcell.

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