Castleford Tigers coach makes Jake Connor admission as transfer policy explained

Drew Darbyshire
Craig Lingard

Castleford Tigers head coach Craig Lingard

Craig Lingard insists Castleford Tigers have not held any conversations about signing Jake Connor on loan – and insists he will find out imminently whether the club have any budget left to sign further players.

Love Rugby League exclusively revealed on Wednesday that Connor had been made available for loan by Huddersfield Giants, something Ian Watson conceded was a distinct possibility on his own pre-match media conference on Thursday morning.

Lingard admitted that after the signing of Matty English from the Giants earlier this week, he is unsure what their position is in terms of being able to bring in more signings.

But he confirmed they had not held talks about the possibility of signing Connor.

“Not at the moment,” he said.

“We’ve not had any conversations about that, whether we’ve got the budget to do any more business, whether it’s Jake or anyone else I don’t know, we’ll have to have a meeting after I’ve done this today.

“We’re midway through the season so the staff have done a mid-season review, we’ve had a mid-season review with the team and we’re going to have a wider club mid-season review as well now.

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“I’d imagine we’d have some discussions about what’s left and what’s not left so hopefully there’s a little bit of money left just in case we do need to strengthen or if someone becomes available, then there might be an option to do something.”

Lingard admitted that the UK market was ‘done and dusted’ in terms of signings, though.

He continued: “I’ve said before that the market in the UK that the players off-contract for next season or that are available is really, really minimal.

“As much as we’re saying we’re going to go out and bring some players in, we might have to look further afield and overseas because the market in the UK now is pretty much done and dusted.

“So unless someone falls out of favour or teams strengthen in areas that then makes other players become available that are still under contract, then we’re going to be struggling for the UK market so when someone like Matty does become available then we are going to be interested, even if it’s for a two-week period, we’re certainly going to be interested in players like Matty.”

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