Sheffield v Featherstone: Sharp wary of troubled Eagles

Featherstone Rovers head coach Jon Sharp will not take Sheffield Eagles lightly despite Friday's hosts' wretched recent record.

Rovers are currently sixth in the Championship but just two points adrift of third-placed Bradford Bulls as a fascinating battle for the top-continues.

Sheffield are normally in the reckoning themselves – they were Grand Final winners in 2012 and 2013 – but have slumped to tenth following six successive defeats and now, instead, face a relegation fight.

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However, after an uninspiring 30-18 win against Whitehaven, Sharp knows his own side must improve, too.

“There always seems to be spice between Sheffield and Featherstone; the games almost seem like cup finals,” he said.

“It’s not going to be any different on Friday. It’s going to be a really tough game.

“We’ve got to be better than we were last week, that’s for sure.

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“We have high expectations and I thought we just fell below that. We didn’t play as well as we needed to against a good footballing team.

“We know that it’s not good enough and if we perform like that again, then we’ll get beat.”

Sheffield have not won since defeating Dewsbury on April 29 but, after a narrow 22-18 defeat at Swinton Lions last time out, have signed French brothers Amini and Hakim Miloudi, on a month’s loan from Catalans Dragons to strengthen their ranks.

Coach Mark Aston – who had a brief playing spell at Featherstone – said: “We’re working hard and I keep telling them that the bounce of the ball will go our way one day but it’s not happening for us yet.

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“We’re getting a bit of competition for places now, we’ve got a few more faces around the place so everyone is going to be looking over their shoulder, which is exciting for me for the first time this year.

“If we work hard again on Friday and produce a performance we can get back on track.”