Opposition Profile – Catalans Dragons
Remi Casty in the match Leeds Rhinos Vs Catalans Dragons at Emerald Headingley Stadium, Leeds
For the second time in 2019, Catalans Dragons will visit Emerald Headingley Stadium to take on the Rhinos. Steve McNamara’s side come into the game in fifth spot in the league and will be looking to pick up two points to strengthen their chances of securing a play off spot at the end of the season.
Since Catalans Dragons were last at Emerald Headingley, they have won three out of four matches. They have been scored twenty tries in those games, notably winger Jodie Broughton crossing for a hat trick in a 44-10 win against Wakefield Trinity at the Stade Gilbert Brutus. Their only loss came away to Salford, who ran out 40-14 winners.
Over the course of the season, Catalans have produced big results against St Helens and Warrington but have also suffered disappointing losses to Hull FC, who have scored 50 points twice against Catalans in the Challenge Cup and the league. The 51-8 loss to Lee Radford’s side in the Cup sent the Dragons on a five match losing streak that ended with a win against Wakefield.
Their recent success has sees McNamara’s side in the play offs spots. They are level on 26 points with Wigan and are just two points ahead of sixth placed Salford and seventh placed Castleford, so a win against the Rhinos is important in helping their ambitions to feature in the play offs for the first time since 2014.
When Catalans first walked out at Emerald Headingley in 2006, they were blown away by Brian McClennan’s Rhinos, who won 60-12 in the final game of that season. Over the next two years, Catalans’ scoreline would remain in single figures against Leeds, who won 54-8 in 2007 and 34-6 in 2008, with Danny McGuire the only player to score in both matches.
Leeds continued to win into the new decade, taking both home and away results in 2010 despite results drawing closer, notably in 2013 when Leeds needed late tries from Danny McGuire and Mitch Achurch to save a 20-12 result.
In 2015, a hat trick from Tom Briscoe helped the Rhinos to a 36-22 win. Mitch Garbutt also scored his first Leeds try since signing from Melbourne Storm.
Previous Meetings at Emerald Headingley
See more classic clashes between the two sides at Emerald Headingley here.
Record against the Rhinos
Catalans’ first win came in 2016, thanks to a late Eloi Pelissier interception try sealing a 24-12 victory. That season the Dragons won both home and away fixtures for the first time and repeated the feat last season.
Leeds have won both fixtures against the Dragons on six occasions (2006, 2008, 2010, 2013, 2014 and 2017) and remained unbeaten at Emerald Headingley from 2006 to 2015, scoring over 390 points.
Both sides have met three times in the Play Offs. Leeds have won two of those fixtures, at Headingley in 2009 and at the Stade Gilbert Brutus in 2012. Both results ended 27-20, with Danny McGuire scoring tries in both matches. The Dragons’ only play off win came in 2014; Sam Williams crossing for the game clinching try despite replays suggesting the half back was offside.
In the News
Sam Tomkins and Michael McIlorum will miss the trip to Leeds after picking up bans in the win over Warrington Wolves last Saturday. Tomkins will miss the next three matches and McIlorum will be unavailable for the next two.
Half back Matty Smith has signed for Warrington on loan for the remainder of the season. Smith joined the Dragons at the start of the season and has played 16 times but will move to the Wolves, who lost Blake Austin to injury last weekend.
Clean Breaks: 13
Missed Tackles: 34
Last Time Out
When Catalans visited Emerald Headingley at the end of June, Leeds were clinical as they picked up their seventh win of the season. Adam Cuthbertson, Brad Singleton, Jack Walker, Tom Briscoe and Konrad Hurrell all scored for the Rhinos, with Richie Myler kicking a drop goal to seal a 31-12 victory.
Lewis Tierney, Benjamin Jullien, Lambert Belmas and Lucas Albert all return for the Dragons’ trip to Emerald Headingley on Friday night. Only Greg Bird and the banned Sam Tomkins and Michael McIlorum miss out from last week’s team, with Brayden Williame, Kenny Edwards and Mickael Simon escaping suspension.
Secure your tickets for Friday night’s double header, which sees the Under 19s take on Widnes Vikings U19s prior to the main Super League clash against the Dragons.
Match tickets start from just £12 for juniors, from £16 for concessions and from £24 adults. Book before midnight the day before the game to guarantee the best price for your ticket and save £3 on match day prices.*