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Widnes Vikings v Salford Red Devils – Match preview

Salford travel to The Select Security Stadium this Thursday or Naughton Park as it was famously known for many years. The Red Devils have had quite a bit of success on this ground in recent seasons and it’s always a good away trip for the supporters.

One thing that is always consistent is the pitch: the artificial surface can really suit teams who like to play a quick tempo. Salford have won on the last three visits and a win this Thursday could really start to build momentum ahead of the Easter campaign.


Super League Away record

Salford won 7

Widnes won 4

Draws 0


2002 Widnes 16 Salford 26

2002 Widnes 15 Salford 14

2004 Widnes 14 Salford 15

2005 Widnes 6 Salford 22

2012 Widnes 18 Salford 38

2013 Widnes 58 Salford 24

2014 Widnes 32 Salford 18

2015 Widnes 21 Salford 20

2015 Widnes 10 Salford 24 (qualifiers)

2016 Widnes 24 Salford 32

2017 Widnes 10 Salford 46


They played for both

There a quite a lot to be honest so I’ve selected a few from years gone by and some from not so long ago.

Richie Barnett, Keith Bentley, Eric Prescott, Craig Coleman, Jason Critchley, John Duffy, Cliff Eccles, Ensene Famailo, Joe Famailo, Matt Gardner, Aaron Moule, Adrian Hadley, Karl Hammond, Tim Hartley, Gareth Hock, Rangi Chase, David Hulme, Craig Makin, Stephen Myler, Richie Myler, Stephen Nash, Gareth O Brien, Terry O Connor, Kieran O Loughlin, Lokeni Savelio, Trevor Stockley, Kevin Tamati, David Myers, Steve Tyrer and Phil Waring.


A match to remember – Sunday 19th February 2012

Widnes 18 – Salford 38.

Salford earned their first win of the season at the third time of asking as they won comfortably at Widnes in this encounter 6 years ago. After leaving The Willows a few months earlier Salford were adapting to their new stadium at Barton. After an opening night home defeat to Castleford in terrible conditions an away defeat to St Helens followed.

Widnes were back in Super League after being awarded promotion after the 2011 season despite finishing 5th and being eliminated from the playoffs by Sheffield.

Salford tore in to The Vikings in a world wind first half and the game was all over by the break as Salford ran in six first-half tries from Luke Patten (2), Daniel Holdsworth (2), Jodie Broughton and Gareth Owen.

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Widnes had scored one lone first-half try from Patrick Ah Van, who added a second after the break, Paddy Flynn also crossing. But Iafeta Paleaaesina’s second-half try wrapped up victory for the Reds. Several Salford players were given permission by the Rugby Football League to wear tights to combat the risk of injuries on the synthetic pitch at the Stobart Stadium.

This was the first top flight league meeting between the two sides since 2005. They had met in 2008 in the 1st Division, Widnes had edged that one 20-18.

Playing in their flashy green kit the result was never in doubt for the visitors. An excellent win for Phil Veivers side who went on to win their first game at their new stadium a week later.

Widnes: Craven; Flynn, Marsh, Isa, Ah Van; White, Hanbury; Cross, Clarke, Davies, Winterstein, Allen, Haggerty.

Replacements: Watts, Kavanagh, Leuluai, Mullally.

Salford: Patten; Broughton, Nero, Gibson, Williams; Holdsworth, Smith; McPherson, Howarth, Gledhill, Adamson, Anderson, Wild.

Replacements: Owen, Sidlow, Jewitt, Paleaaesina.

Attendance: 5,053.


Thursday’s match

The Vikings are currently on 4 league points with home victories against Catalan Dragons and Leeds Rhinos, sitting just above Salford on points difference. Away from home they pushed Castleford and Wigan very close but a disappointing home defeat to Huddersfield last time out will concern their coach Dennis Betts. Last week their game at Wakefield was abandoned after 26 minutes due to snow. This should be a very exciting game on what is a very fast pitch which should suit both sides. The hosts have two good halves in Joe Mellor and Tom Gilmore as well as a host of young talent throughout the side.

Salford will be looking to build on last week’s excellent performance at home to Hull. Don’t forget the action gets under way a little earlier than last week, it’s a 7:45pm kick off.

Enjoy the match everyone.

Paul Whiteside.

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