Huddersfield comments are a “terrible attitude”, says Sam Tomkins

Sam Tomkins Catalans Dragons SWpix
Photo: John Rushworth/SWpix

Sam Tomkins says Catalans boss Steve McNamara was right to accuse Huddersfield of disrespect after their alleged comments to IMG about French clubs not being in Super League.

McNamara reacted furiously last week, after learning of the alleged comments, saying: “There is talk of Huddersfield saying French teams give nothing to the game and should not be in Super League which is an absolute disgrace. People talk about the game being together but it’s b******t.”

Huddersfield managing director Richard Thewlis questioned how McNamara would know what was said and insisted discussions were better being kept private.

But speaking on this week’s Love Rugby League Podcast, Tomkins says McNamara was entirely within his rights to defend his club.

“The first I heard of it was when I read the comments from Steve,” said Tomkins.

“Steve doesn’t say things out of anger or emotion. We can take a tough loss or a great win and Steve isn’t doing cartwheels or crying at either of those.

“Steve will think about what he is going to say. He doesn’t get too high or too low and that is the consistency you want from your coach.

“So the comments regarding Huddersfield won’t have just been blurted out, they will have been thought through. I would back everything that he is saying. I think it is a terrible attitude to have. We clearly add to what Super League has got so I would back Steve’s comments. He would have thought that through and known exactly what has gone on before coming out with that.”

Sam Tomkins: We bring a lot to Super League

And Tomkins is keen to remind Huddersfield and any other critics of French rugby league, just what the Dragons bring to Super League.

“We have won a Challenge Cup and got to a Grand Final,” he said. “These are things that clubs who have been in Super League for decades haven’t done.

“We make it an international league. There’s an M62 corridor that everyone goes on about and London came in at one point; and Crusaders and it’s not quite worked. We are a club that works. 

“We have an owner who puts his hand in his pocket more than any other owner. Through Covid there is no other owner who would have done what Bernard (Guasch) did. He was getting hit from his work side, the business that makes the money for the club to survive; and then dipping his hand in his own pocket spending more than he had ever spent when he was earning less than he had ever earned. 

“We bring a group of passionate fans. Everyone knows when you come to Catalans it is a different experience to any other club. You get some great atmospheres in Super League but over here it is different, it is a carnival atmosphere.”

PODCAST: Sam Tomkins on what Catalans bring to Super League, neighbour Shaun Edwards & leading England at World Cup

FOLLOW: Keep up with all the latest on the Love Rugby League mobile app and podcast


  1. Your so correct Sammy lad . If my mind serves me correctly challenge cup turn out that year was poor , around 25000 less attendance on previous years . Again your bang on , Catalans at Old Trafford grand final , approximately 20000 fans down on previous few years . Why was that ? 😕

    • I note that you don’t mention that the following year’s Challenge Cup final featuring Warrington and St Helens was also one of the lowest attendances in recent history or that Catalans first appearance at Wembley in 2007 was one of the highest in recent history. It’s a shame to see the same old arguments coming about Catalans commercial value when there are probably three or four other SuperLeague clubs that you could use the same argument for. If we cannot think with a wider perspective than this I fear for the commercial future of the sport.

  2. Super League is a business.
    So is money and profit driven.
    The cost of taking a full squad plus the support staff must be prohibitive.
    The revenue from fans visiting Perpignan is massive for the local economy the same can not be said if the return visit.
    I like going to Perpignan but from a business point of view it does it makes no commercial sense.

  3. Super League will back these French teams to the hilt. They changed rules, allowed them to get away with stuff that no other Super League team got. And just how many of your Carnival fans travel to away games? None.But somehow, every time an English club goes there, they manage to have a couple of hundred fans travelling. The last time Catalan or Toulouse came to my home ground there were more directors than fans. The two that did come came from Sheffield. How is that bringing anything to the table?

  4. You guys have to look past your gate. No one outside the nth of England will tune in to watch Huddersfield play Wakefield. But we’ll tune in to watch Cat play anyone. Money is in tv rights and merch. Relying on 5000 pounds from away fans is crumbs. U17 French team just whipped the butts of the U17 English. It won’t be long til saints and Wigan et al want to play in French Elite.

    • Why would we tune in to watch Cat play anyone as opposed to Huddersfield vs Wakefield? Please explain. Folks are up in arms cos it’s a novelty they don’t want to lose. Facts are Catalans have been in SL decades but I’m still waiting for this massive French tv deal everyone harps on about. Facts are it costs an absolute fortune for teams to travel, with kit, backroom staff etc, to orhanise documenst, passports etc for a match in France compared to Uk. Facts are it costs fans hundreds of pounds to go watch their team in France for a 80 minute game of RL. I still await what benefits a team in France bring as opposed to such as Leigh, Featherstone, London, Newcastle, Workington, Barrow etc. Can someone actually answer the question with some hard facts of the positives against a few of the negatives I have listed.

  5. Rester entre vous et vous resterait un championat regional qui est appeler a mourir a petit feu
    Prener exemple sur le rugby a xv qui est en plaine expension!

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