Salford Red Devils v Leeds Rhinos: Dave Furner looking for Rhinos to counter Devils’ threat

LEEDS RHINOS head coach Dave Furner remains confident his side can finally get their Super League season off the mark tomorrow.

The Australian is still awaiting his first win after opening up with defeats at Warrington Wolves and champions Wigan Warriors.

With building work continuing at Emerald Headingley they are on the road again tomorrow when they head back over the Pennines to Salford Red Devils.

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Ordinarily that would be seen as a likely victory, but, in direct contrast to themselves, their opponents have started with a 100 per cent success rate.

Leeds Rhinos' head coach Dave Furner. Picture: Martin Rickett/PA

Indeed, if you choose to pay any attention to the league table after just two rounds Salford are the surprise early leaders.

They followed up an impressive 34-14 win at Huddersfield Giants with a 24-0 victory over London Broncos last week.

“They have two wins on the board and are obviously confident,” said Furner. “But, as a team, we need to take the confidence out of the areas where we did very well against Wigan and sustain those for longer periods.

“I still focus on our improvements as a team. We talked about that last week.

“There were some very good patches there at Wigan. Just at times a little bit of execution let us down. With execution, some players need to be better.

“What I did like was that they never stopped trying effort-wise for 80 minutes and they’ll be no different this week.

“There is a lot of effort going in. But, individually, we need to make sure we take care of our own job first.”

Salford’s big threat is Australian half-back Jackson Hastings, but Furner insisted: “They’ve got more than Jackson. He’s playing some very good football. Rob Lui I’ve been involved with when he was at the (North Queensland) Cowboys. Lussick at nine, they’ve got some really good threats there.

“For us it’s about the way we need to play to combat that.”

Furner has named the same 19-man squad and does not envisage any changes.

This means that there is still no return for Jamie Jones-Buchanan, the former Great Britain second-row who has been unable to complete a full week’s training due to a chest infection. He did train yesterday and Furner said Ashton Golding, the full-back who is also yet to feature this term, also returned to practice.

The coach does not expect Grand Final winner Brad Singleton to play on dual-registration for Featherstone Rovers again this weekend.

It has been a surprise to many that the Ireland prop was sent there last week.

Furner said: “He needs more game time, but also not so much the length, but what’s involved in that time. He played very well.”

Salford coach Ian Watson is set to field the same team for the third successive week with Jake Bibby and Tyrone McCarthy again likely to be the ones to drop out of his 19-man squad.