Can Leeds Rhinos defend their Super League crown in 2016?

In 2015, Leeds Rhinos swept up all of rugby league’s silverware in a dominant season for Brian McDermott’s men.

The Rhinos finished at the top of the table in the Super League regular season, as well as thrashing Hull Kingston Rovers 50-0 in the Challenge Cup final. Then, in the biggest game of them all, the Rhinos scraped a 22-20 victory over Shaun Wane’s Wigan Warriors to secure yet another Super League Grand Final title.

Next season, however, things are going to be very different at Headingley Stadium. Kevin Sinfield, Jamie Peacock and Kylie Leuluai have all retired from the sport and the Rhinos have three colossal gaps to fill in their squad.

While they may be able to replace all three men on the field, they will lose a lot of charisma, character and experience in the dressing room and on the training field. Leeds are an excellent outfit and the Rhinos will be well priced in the betting markets to defend their title next season. 

The Rhinos will still be quietly confident of defending their Super League crown next season and it would take a brave man to bet against them. Keith Galloway will come in at prop in a bed to replace Peacock’s impact on both sides of the ball, while Beau Falloon will extend their depth at the hooker position.

Meanwhile, Leeds has also acquired Featherstone Rovers star Jordan Baldwinson and the youngster could be one of the brightest talents in Super League next season. Furthermore, they have winger Ryan Hall – who is widely regarded as one of rugby league’s greatest players – and he will be well supported in the top try scorer markets.

Many will be backing Leeds to defend their crown next season and rightly so. If you’d like to find out more information on the Rhinos, or any of the other sides in Super League next season, you can get all of the latest information, as well as a free bet this month, at bookies.com. On their website, you can also keep up with all of the upcoming fixtures and results, or receive tips on rugby league matches. 

There are a number of other candidates who will be licking their lips at the prospect of playing Leeds next season, with many believing that the Rhinos will be going through a transitional period. Warrington Wolves were disappointing in 2015 but will be keen to press on and challenge for glory next season, while St Helens and Wigan will provide stern competition once again. You can find more odds and tips on these sides on Bookies’ website as well.

Leeds are capable of defending their title but it will be difficult. It has always been tricky to win Super League but, with the new Super 8’s format and the improvement across the division, it is now becoming much more difficult to defend the crown. Having said that, if anyone can mastermind a title defence, it’s Brian McDermott. Only time will tell but, with a bit of luck, the Rhinos may be celebrating yet another Grand Final success in October 2016.

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