Paper Talk: Smith open to loan, Russell to Salford, Tomkins future

There are a number of exclusives in this morning’s papers.

Smith wants Saints stay but open to loan

Matty Smith has admitted he has received offers about a move away from St Helens, and he says would happily go out on loan to play regularly, report League Express. The 30-year-old has been linked with a move away from the Totally Wicked Stadium this season due to him being out of favour. However, he played for Saints twice over the Easter period and would like to stay. He told League Express: “If it takes going on loan to get some games, I’d be happy to do that. Both parties would benefit from that; I’d benefit from playing games and if I get the call to come back, I’ll be better for it, which will help Saints. But I’m playing for Saints now and I’m intent on being in the side.”

Russell close to joining Salford

Salford Red Devils are closing in on a deal for Warrington Wolves winger or full-back, Matty Russell, according to League Weekly. The Scotland star is out of favour at Warrington, with Mitch Brown being the understudy for starters Tom Lineham and Josh Charnley. Russell is reportedly set to sign a three-year deal with Salford. The 24-year-old has scored 30 tries in 95 games for the Wolves.

Chester applied for Scotland job

Wakefield Trinity coach Chris Chester has emerged as one of the leading candidates to become the new Scotland head coach, League Express have revealed. Sources have told the paper that Chester has applied and been interviewed for the vacant position. Wakefield have reportedly allowed Chester to take on the role if he is offered the job.

Mayor of Hamilton supports New York bid

The Mayor of Hamilton, New Jersey, has thrown his weight behind a rugby league franchise in the Big Apple, claim League Weekly. The support from Mayor James Fife is a boost to the club’s chances of being accepted into the Rugby Football League in the next couple of years. New York rugby league co-founder, Ricky Wilby, said: “It gives me great pleasure as the Mayor of the town of Harrison to lend my support to the New York Rugby League Club as they endeavour to become the first USA-based Trans-Atlantic Rugby League franchise.”

Thompson on St Helens without Barba

Luke Thompson believes that St Helens have proved they are not just a one-man team after easing past Hull FC without Ben Barba, report League Express. Barba was ruled out of Friday’s 26-12 win over Hull FC with illness, but Thompson insists the team can play just as well without the Steve Prescott Man of Steel favourite. He told League Express: “Some people would probably write us off without him, but we are not just a one-man team and like you could see against Hull, we can get the right results without him.”

Tomkins future to be confirmed soon

Sam Tomkins’ Wigan future could be decided by the end of the month, claim League Weekly. It is reported that Catalans Dragons want to bring him to Perpignan, offering him a lucrative four-year contract. However, Wigan have the option to retain him for next season if they wish to do so. On Saturday, Catalans coach, Steve McNamara, said: “I’m not going to speak about any player that isn’t our player.”

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