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Last Updated: Sunday, 2 September 2007, 16:15 GMT 17:15 UK
Salford confident of swift return
Salford's Andy Coley
Andy Coley is one of those expected to leave Salford
Salford's chairman says he expects the club to bounce back from relegation and secure a place in Super League for 2009 when a franchise system is introduced.

Shaun McRae's side bowed out of the top flight when relegation rivals Hull KR beat Hull on Sunday to move five points clear with two matches to go.

"We have already begun to sign well for the next campaign," insisted chairman John Wilkinson.

"We will be rightly confident of a speedy return to Super League."

The Reds reached the Super League play-offs for the first time last season under Karl Harrison but his five-year tenure was ended after their 66-6 loss away to the Catalans Dragons in May.

Some players will obviously move on and we will be trying to retain others

Chief executive David Tarry

"This season may not have been what we all expected but we have brought in a fantastic coach with the pedigree of winning the Super League on his CV," said Wilkinson.

"Next March we must apply for our franchise in Super League along with all other clubs and we are confident with the work we have done behind the scenes that this will be granted next June.

"We are already looking forward to great times ahead and I am certain that we can set our city alight once more with our colours before we return to the top flight of our great game."

After Harrison's departure Salford's survival hopes briefly flickered with victory over Huddersfield in one of two matches under caretaker coach Steve Simms before Australian McRae took charge on a four and a half year contract.

But they won just twice under the former St Helens and Hull boss and McRae will need to rebuild next season as the club prepares to leave The Willows and move into a state-of-the-art stadium in 2010.


The majority of the players' contracts will become void and key men like Luke Robinson, Andy Coley and David Hodgson may be snapped up by other Super League clubs.

But chief executive David Tarry said that Cronulla Sharks prop forward Craig Stapleton will honour his two-year deal and that the club is likely to retain a full-time squad in the National League, despite a huge drop in the salary cap.

"Obviously we've been keeping an eye on the situation and we're prepared," said Tarry.

"I suppose the agonising wait has come to an end. We know what we have to do to get ourselves back with the franchise application and it's a matter of getting on with it.

"Some players will obviously move on and we will be trying to retain others."

Hull 6-42 Hull KR
02 Sep 07 |  Rugby League
Salford sign Stapleton for 2008
13 Aug 07 |  Salford
Reds future 'secure with McRae'
12 Jun 07 |  Salford
Salford sack head coach Harrison
22 May 07 |  Salford


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