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Saints v Reds: Teams
At Langtree Park, Friday February 10, kick-off 8pm
The atmosphere over here is a lot better than the atmosphere in Australia - 18,000 St Helens supporters can make more noise than 40,000 supporters in Australia.
Quotes of the week
There'll be no place like home for St Helens on Friday night when they host Salford City Reds at Langtree Park, live on Sky Sports.
The state-of-the-art stadium will stage its very first Stobart Super League match as Saints, fresh off the back of an opening-weekend win away at London Broncos, finally get to play a competitive fixture at the venue.
To mark the occasion, legendary winger Tom van Vollenhoven will lead out the hosts, who spent last season at the Stobart Stadium in Widnes.
"We haven't spoken too much about the new stadium just yet but a bit closer to the game we'll probably talk about how important it is to set a good standard here," coach Royce Simmons said.
"I'm looking forward to a good atmosphere. The crowd will certainly bring us home if we turn up in the right frame of mind to start with.
"The atmosphere over here is a lot better than the atmosphere in Australia - 18,000 St Helens supporters can make more noise than 40,000 supporters in Australia.
"It was a difference I didn't probably see."
As for team news, Saints will have to do without Jamie Foster, a thigh injury meaning the goal-kicking winger joins Mark Flanagan (chest) on the sidelines.
Ade Gardner is likely to take Foster's place out wide, while Gary Wheeler continues to deputise for injured England centre Michael Shenton.
There is, however, better news for Simmons over Tony Puletua and Chris Flannery, with both forwards fit to be included in a 19-man squad.
Salford will be out to spoil the party, having themselves suffered a 24-10 reverse to Castleford last week in their first league match at their new home in Barton.
They will, however, have to do so without the services of hooker Wayne Godwin and centre Sean Gleeson.
Utility player Stuart Howarth is set to take over from Godwin, who could be sidelined for as long as two months after suffering rib cartilage damage.
Coach Phil Veivers could hand a debut to Australian forward Shannon McPherson after he was not selected to face the Tigers. Ashley Gibson, Chris Nero and Adam Sidlow have also been called up.
Simmons is not reading too much into how the City Reds played last Saturday due to the adverse weather conditions.
"They've a new coach, a new assistant coach and a new pattern of how they're going to play," he said. "We're not going to learn a lot from the snow but I saw a good performance from them against Wigan."
David Watkins will lead out the Salford team before kick-off in front of what is expected to be a capacity 17,200 crowd.
St Helens squad: Gardner, Soliola, Meli, Hohaia, Lomax, Perry, Roby, McCarthy-Scarsbrook, Puletua, Wilkin, Flannery, Laffranchi, Clough, Wheeler, Dixon, Gaskell, Makinson, Hale, Ashe.
Salford squad: Patten, Broughton, Moon, Gibson, Williams, Holdsworth, Smith, Jewitt, Sidlow, James, Ashurst, McPherson, Wild, Nero, Adamson, Anderson, Howarth, Paleaaesina, Gledhill.
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Super League Table
|9||Hull K R||27||23|
|10||Salford Red Devils||27||23|
|13||Bradford Bulls *||27||10|
|First Utility Super League|
|Thursday 5th February|
|20:00||Widnes vs Wigan|
|Friday 6th February|
|20:00||St Helens vs Catalans Dragons|
|Saturday 7th February|
|15:00||Warrington vs Salford|
|Sunday 8th February|
|15:00||Huddersfield vs Hull|
|15:00||Hull K R vs Leeds|
|15:30||Castleford vs Wakefield|
|Thursday 12th February|
|20:00||Salford vs St Helens|
|Friday 13th February|
|20:00||Hull vs Warrington|
|20:00||Leeds vs Widnes|
|20:00||Wigan vs Huddersfield|
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