Paper Talk: Elstone back in June, Rankin on Thorman, Blease silences money rumours

There are quite a few juicy stories in this week’s trade newspapers.

Elstone to take charge in June

Everton chief executive Robert Elstone could be in charge of Super League by the summer, according to League Express. The paper claim a deal to bring the former Castleford Tigers board member out of the Premier League football club and back into rugby league is close to being finalised. Everton want him to at stay until the end of the football season, though.

Rankin wants Thorman as Huddersfield coach permanently

Chris Thorman should be Huddersfield Giants’ next permanent coach, according to Jordan Rankin, report League Weekly. Thorman started his caretaker role on Good Friday and guided he side to a 22-22 draw against champions Leeds Rhinos. Rankin told League Weekly: “I would like to see him being the head coach of the Giants. He is a Giant through and through. I don’t see a more passionate man to lead Huddersfield than Chris Thorman.”

Catalans hit back at rugby union comments

Catalans Dragons president Bernard Guasch has hit back at a French rugby union chief who said he’d happily see rugby league ‘damaged and ruined’, report League Express. Speaking about the possibility of local union club USAP gaining promotion, union president in the Perpignan region, Alain Doucet, said: “If that happens and it helps to ruin rugby league in the area, it would cause me great pleasure.” Dragons president Guasch replied: “Unfortunately, we had forgotten how good the values of rugby were and we thank the brand new president of the Occitanie Rugby Union for reminding us. We knew these reasonings still existed, but we are surprised that they are expressed in public at such a level of hierarchy. But these comments only prove that we still exist and that our sport is alive.”

Leeds open to playing Salford in New York

Leeds Rhinos chief executive Gary Hetherington has confirmed the club are open to playing a game in New York this year, claim League Weekly. Hetherington admitted the Super League champions supported Salford’s plans to take a game to the USA and would be interested in an invite. He said: “If there’s a genuine interest in (having a rugby league team in) New York then it makes sense to me to take a game there and showcase it, test the market.”

Clark in full support of Denver Test

Warrington Wolves star Daryl Clark admits he doesn’t understand the issue surrounding England’s proposed mid-season Test match against New Zealand in Denver, report League Express. Several NRL clubs and the Rugby League Players Association have raised a number of concerns about the proposed match, but Clark is in support of the Test going ahead. He told League Express: “If they want to promote the game to a wider and global audience then I can’t see why the NRL would want to stop it. I don’t think there’s anywhere better than America to play a game of this magnitude.”

Blease silences speculation on more departures

Salford Red Devils chief executive Ian Blease insists the club have no plans to sell any more stars – hinting mischievous agents are to blame for rumours more players could go, report League Weekly. Gareth O’Brien left the club for Toronto Wolfpack last month for a six-figure fee, but Blease insists the Red Devils do not have to sell. He told League Weekly: “As far as other players are concerned, unless they come knocking at my door saying they want to leave then they’ll all be staying. There are a lot of rumours, but if you trace it all back then it comes from one management company – which is disappointing, but we all know the game.”

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