Club of the Week: Barrow

Contract negotiations at Barrow have been put on hold as the club is faced with the possibility of relegation this weekend.

Second-bottom Raiders’ Championship future will be decided by their final game of the season, as they face Keighley at Craven Park on Sunday.

Victory over the Cougars by more than 12 points would deny their opposion a bonus point, and therefore ensure Barrow’s safety.

There are various permutations should the Raiders not win by 12 points – or not win at all – so coach Darren Holt is making victory over 10th-placed Keighley his sole focus.

Holt said, “At this stage of the season, you like to know what you’re doing next year, it’s a weight off your mind and you can concentrate on playing rugby.

“There are contract talks ongoing, but any talks which have taken place will be dependant on the result this weekend.

“If we end up getting relegated, then I would have to guess that any negotiations would have to completely restart.”

Holt does not believe the reduced salary cap in Championship One will be an issue when contracts are discussed should relegation occur.

Instead, the main issue will be the ambition of players to perform at a higher level, and there have already been suggestions that some of the squad have caught the eye of other clubs.

Holt said, “I don’t think restrictions on wages will be a big issue, because I don’t see there being a big difference whether we are in the Championship or Championship One, because of the restrictions placed on us.

“That might be a case of it is what it is, but certainly for the players, I think the negotiations which have taken place have been on the premise that we are playing Championship rugby next year.

“Let’s be honest though, that’s all secondary at the minute because we have what is the most important game of the year coming up and we should really be concentrating on this game with Keighley.

“Everything else is surplus and secondary.”

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