Toulouse Olympique may be enjoying their first foray in Betfred Super League this season but Salford Red Devils boss Paul Rowley is taking nothing for granted when they go head to head on Sunday (15:00 KO).
Marc Sneyd inspired Salford to an impressive opening win at his former club Castleford last weekend, with his perfect seven from seven with the boot proving pivotal in the 26-16 win, with both sides having scored three tries.
Toulouse made a fast start to their first top-flight experience as they went 10-0 up against Huddersfield but they were ultimately given a rude awakening by the Giants, who powered to a 42-14 win.
However, despite the contrasting results for the two sides as well as having home advantage, Rowley insists that his men will need to be at their very best to secure the victory (Salford 1/16, Toulouse 9/1, Tie 28/1 – Match Betting).
“It’s the unknown – expect the unexpected when you’re dealing with players like Tony Gigot, who is a wonderful rugby league player, and then they’ve got some real experience there in [Dominique] Peyroux and [Joseph] Paulo,” Rowley told Salford’s official website.
Betfred Super League Odds
“They’re a very dangerous side, I’ve coached against them before, they’ve got a great coach. We need to be at our best, I said that after Castleford and I’ll maintain that saying throughout that we always need to be at our best.”
Rowley is in no doubt as to who the big danger to his side is, although the former Toronto Wolfpack coach insists that the French side are far from a one-man team.
“I think Toulouse’s most dangerous player is Matty Russell without a shadow of a doubt,” Rowley added. “He’s so hard to handle and many coaches say ‘we need to do this on Matty and deal with him this way’ but he’s so difficult to handle and he’s such a great player for them.
“And on the same edge, there is [Andrew] Dixon, whom I have the utmost respect for, he’s won Grand Finals with St Helens, promotions on a couple of occasions from the Championship to the Super League and he’s an all-round great guy.”
Castleford will look to make home advantage count to make it two from two at the start of the season, joining St Helens (2/1 Grand Final Winners), Huddersfield (25/1), Wigan (5/1) and Warrington (10/3) with perfect records.
Rugby League Betting Odds