I KNOW this is stating the obvious.
But I’m absolutely delighted to have signed one of the best wingers in the game in David Hodgson, left, from Salford City Reds.
He is, of course, a current Great Britain international, having played for the Lions in this summer’s one-off Test against France at Headingley, alongside our Super League Dream Team representative Stephen Wild.
David thoroughly deserved to play in that game, and acquitted himself extremely well, hence the fact that he – along with Stephen and Kevin Brown – is in the initial Great Britain squad for this autumn’s Test series against New Zealand.
There’s no question David is a proven player at the top level. He has speed, the ability to finish and tremendous versatility, proving an excellent Super League performer on the wing, at full-back and in the centres.
As far as I’m concerned, he is a direct replacement for Paul Reilly.
Initially, it will be my intention next season to start with David on one wing and Rod Jensen on the other, because Rod has been awesome for us out wide.
But once Martin Aspinwall fully recovers from his major knee reconstruction – which will be around March time – the wingers will be David and Martin, with Rod playing a different role, which I am sure will not affect the impact he has been making.
However, they both know that if their performances slip, I would have no hesitation whatsoever in moving Rod back to the wing.
And that’s the way I want it.
In my opinion, you can never have enough good players, and I believe that next season I’ve got good players in abundance.
I’m really pleased with our recruitment process and I can’t wait to work with the new players we have on our books.
As well as David, we’ve got Luke Robinson from Salford – who, from a Super League Team of the Season produced by official RFL stats company Opta, was named at scrum half – New Zealand Test centre Paul Whatuira and New Zealand Warriors hooker George Gatis.
They are four quality players who will without doubt enhance the quality of our squad for 2008.
This will be it for our recruitment for next season but, as far as I’m concerned, that’s enough to make sure we can be even more competitive!