Catalans: Steve McNamara praises Featherstone ahead of cup tie

Steven Hughes
Steve McNamara Catalans Dragons head coach

Catalans Head Coach Steve McNamara has said Featherstone are all but a Super League team already ahead of their Challenge Cup tie on Saturday.

The Dragons will welcome Featherstone to the Stade Gilbert Brutus on Saturday afternoon, and McNamara is expecting a tough game.

The Rovers currently lead the Championship table, after four wins and one draw so far. Their perfect start was ended on Sunday at Batley.

McNamara said of Featherstone: “Yeah, I think it’s a different type of challenge again. I think they are all but a Super League team really aren’t they?

“I even look back to the pre-season trial game. They beat Wakefield comfortably, who are a Super League team. They’re unbeaten so far in the competition. No one’s gone near them, in reality so far.

“They’ve got quality players, play with very experienced players, some good young players, some good overseas players, and obviously, they’ve got Brian Mac coaching them.

“So they’re a really balanced club at the minute and I’m sure they will challenge us next week.”

Catalans skipper Ben Garcia wary of Featherstone

Catalans captain Ben Garcia says they won’t be taking the visit of Championship leaders Featherstone lightly in the Challenge Cup this weekend.

It’s only the second home match the Dragons have played in the competition since their historic win at Wembley in 2018.

And Featherstone will travel with nothing to lose, and will want to go one better than when the two sides met at the same stage in 2015 and Catalans sneaked home by three points.

Garcia said: “We will focus on ourselves. We know that these are tricky matches because sometimes there’s a bit of a lack of concentration.

“I looked at little at the rankings and they are first, they are undefeated and they have a lot of former Super League and even NRL players.”

Read More: Catalans skipper Ben Garcia wary of Featherstone