Joel Moon

The win itself was comprehensive judging by the scoreline, but it came at a cost for the defending champs the Leeds Rhinos, with fullback Zak Hardaker expected to face a stint on the sideline after he injured his thumb in the clash.

The loss of Hardaker for future games is a blow for Leeds, after he was just passed fit for this game following a head knock last week against Castleford – as Leeds coach Brian McDermott believes Hardaker faces a bit of stint on the sideline as does Ryan Bailey, who underwent knee surgery.

“He had a bang to the thumb. He needs an x-ray and that’s not looking good,” McDermott said.

“He will have his x-ray over the weekend but he can’t use his thumb at the moment. I’m a realist and at this stage, it’s not looking good.

“We have a few options at full-back. We will have a look at some stuff, but Kallum Watkins is a likely option at this stage.”

Despite the big win for his side, McDermott still thought his side was rather scrappy overall, but that there were positives to take from the game.

“It was scrappy. We didn’t get to grips with the game and it was not a great spectacle,” he added.

“There were times when we had lots of options and things to go at, but we overplayed. It prepared us for next week because some lads got good game time, and those are the positives.

“We will take the positives and, if we had have had a shocker, we would have waved it off. We wanted to take care of what we could and we did that, to a degree.”

With Leeds largely in control for the majority of the game, there was a bit of a flurry by Salford at one stage, with coach Phil Veivers pleased with his side’s effort and noticed improvement in his team’s performance.

“I saw an improvement from the last two games and was happy with that,” coach Phil Veivers said.

“They had a dig and put the effort it.

“It was there from the first minute to the 80th minute, but there was a little bit less smartness about us at times. We gave them three tries by dropping the ball, but they’re a good side who are all playing for positions and we won’t take anything from them. They scored 42 points.”

By ricky

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