Salford City Reds have today become the Salford Red Devils and that’s not the only change for the Mancunian club, who have also announced the signing of 12 new players. The most notable of these new signings are England forward Gareth Hock and New Zealand-born Rangi Chase.
Chase, the 2011 Man of Steel, was highly regarded by many teams and was hotly tipped to move to Australia at the end of the season and officially handed in a transfer request last month. Salford had previously had two bids rejected for the playmaker but Castleford accepted a third after the request.
The second big signing, Gareth Hock, was set to sign for Parramatta and had signed a contract but pulled out for personal reasons recently.
Salford head coach Brian Noble said in a press release: "We have recruited some great experience with our international players, we have also added some exceptional talent from home and abroad.”
Chairman Marwan Koukash took over the club that was haemorrhaging money but set his sights on a more positive future for the club and sees next year as the year. The club had already announced the signing of Warrington captain Adrian Morley and taken advantage of the struggling Wakefield Wildcats by signing the talented Tim Smith just so the Wildcats could pay their wage bill for this month.
The struggling Wildcats coach Richard Agar had accused Koukash of illegally approaching players, but Koukash hit back saying: “It’s rubbish. Richard you are totally out of order and, since you have made the allegations formally, you should be big enough to go back to the RFL with the evidence so our name can be cleared."
Wakefield, a team at the opposite end of the spectrum, could yet still be forced to sell more players just to survive facing a budget shortfall of £400,000. Earlier this week, new chairman Michael Carter revealed they had also received an offer for captain Danny Kirmond but turned it down.
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