McDermott looks to fix Leeds Rhinos’ ‘struggles’

Leeds Rhinos' head coach, Brian McDermott.  Picture: Bruce Rollinson.
Leeds Rhinos' head coach, Brian McDermott. Picture: Bruce Rollinson.
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LEEDS RHINOS “weren’t awful” in last night’s 33-22 home loss to Warrington Wolves, boss Brian McDermott felt, but he admitted they didn’t do enough to claim the points.

It was Rhinos’ fifth defeat in Betfred Super League and their second in successive home games.

Rhinos trailed by seven at the break, but hit back to lead 22-11 at the end of the third quarter, only for Warrington to dominate the rest of the contest.

McDermott said: “I thought Warrington’s defence was just too stiff for us.

“We found it hard to break a tackle in the early stages and we were ineffective with the ball.

“We played without momentum in the first 20-25 minutes and we ended up playing catch-up in some areas.

Leeds Rhinos' Adam Cuthbertson is tackled by Warrington's defence. Picture Jonathan Gawthorpe 4th May 2018.

Leeds Rhinos' Adam Cuthbertson is tackled by Warrington's defence. Picture Jonathan Gawthorpe 4th May 2018.

“I didn’t think we were awful, I thought it was a competitive game.

“We got back into it, we went through a purple patch with the ball and got some momentum defensively – but I never thought we quite knocked Warrington about or got in charge of them defensively.”

Even when Rhinos surged into an 11-point lead, McDermott insisted: “I never felt in control of the game.

“They were never put to bed at all.

We got back into it, we went through a purple patch with the ball and got some momentum defensively – but I never thought we quite knocked Warrington about or got in charge of them defensively.

Brian McDermott

“To get back into the game showed some great character and some great skill as well.

“We are trying to put together a whole batch of categories that equals a great performance and we are struggling to do that at the moment.”

Closed-season signing Nathaniel Peteru came through his return from a biceps injury with no ill-effects and McDermott was pleased with the New Zealand-born forward’s comeback.

Kallum Watkins. PIC: Bruce Rollinson

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