Super League chief Blake Solly answers the T&A's questions over what the future holds for Bradford Bulls in the Championship

ONES TO WATCH: Sheffield celebrate their Kingstone Press Championship Grand Final victory over Batley Bulldogs last season. Along with Halifax, Leigh, Doncaster, Featherstone and London, they make up the Bulls’ main challengers next season

ONES TO WATCH: Sheffield celebrate their Kingstone Press Championship Grand Final victory over Batley Bulldogs last season. Along with Halifax, Leigh, Doncaster, Featherstone and London, they make up the Bulls’ main challengers next season

First published in Sport
Last updated
Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Photograph of the Author by , Bradford Bulls Reporter

BRADFORD Bulls could be relegated on Sunday, capping a disastrous season which has seen them enter administration, docked six points and lose key players. As planning begins for their first campaign outside the top flight since 1973-74, Super League general manager Blake Solly says the new structure affords Bradford and London the opportunity to bounce straight back.

Ross Heppenstall: How big a challenge do the Bulls face in attempting to return to Super League next year?

Blake Solly: First and foremost, they would need to finish in the top four in the Championship. That would see them play in the qualifiers to get into the top flight in 2016, where they will compete against the bottom four Super League teams. If they can perform well on the pitch, a quarter of their season next year will be in a competition with Super League opposition. The teams who finish in the top four are going to put some pressure on the bottom four in Super League. That middle eight is going to be a really exciting proposition.

RH: How many clubs do you think will be full-time in the Championship next season?

BS: Four or five – Bradford, London, Leigh and possibly Featherstone and maybe one other. My understanding, having spoken to the owners and management of both clubs, is that Bradford and London really want to give it a go next year. They understand that if they can perform well on the pitch then they have got a seven-week series to try and regain Super League status. They are committed to giving themselves the best possible opportunities to do that at the first time of asking.

RH: How do you see the Championship shaping up next season in terms of its competitiveness?

BS: I think it’s going to be a fantastically competitive division when you look at how Leigh have performed this year, and Bradford and London having stated they will stay full-time. Halifax, Featherstone and Doncaster are all very proud clubs with good squads and ambitions to make their mark next season. The new structure will add a great deal of interest from the word go. Every minute of every game is going to matter and I think rugby league fans have got a lot to look forward to.

RH: Super League clubs surely have an advantage, though, with the disparity in central distribution between the top flight and the Championship?

BS: One of the reasons for the restructure was to give those relegated clubs a central distribution that allowed them to stay full-time in a competition that was exciting and innovative. There will be a £1million salary cap in the Championship next season and the Bulls will receive over £750,000 in central distribution. That will be paid monthly just as the Super League distribution is now. While falling out of Super League is obviously difficult, the Bulls will be in receipt of more centrally funded distributions than they were this year and last.

RH: How does this compare to what Super League clubs will receive?

BS: Top-flight clubs will receive £1.6million in central distribution next year and can spend up to £1.825million on the salary cap.

RH: Is staying at Odsal viable for the Bulls in the Championship? The recent Catalan attendance of 5,188 was the lowest home gate in the club’s Super League history.

BS: I’d be surprised if crowds dipped too much next season. The Bulls are pretty confident that they won’t and I think average crowds of around 4,000 would be perfectly viable. But that’s one for the guys at Bradford because they know the market and what is going to improve their fanbase and what isn’t. A number of potential derby games can only help.

RH: The Bulls remain tenants of the RFL at Odsal and will presumably continue to pay rent to the governing body?

BS: We’ve still got the lease and the club will remain tenants, so we don’t really see anything changing on that front. They will be paying the same amount of rent.

RH: Perhaps the many lost supporters will return if, as you would expect, the team are winning regularly?

BS: Absolutely and there are lessons to be learned from other sports about relegation not being the end of a club. Far from it, in fact. You look at Northampton and Harlequins in rugby union and Newcastle United in football. Relegation is always difficult to stomach but the aforementioned clubs have come back into their elite competition far better prepared for the challenges that they face. Hull KR were admitted to Super League on a very strong platform and have been there ever since. Ten years they weren’t in Super League and now it’s hard to think of them not being in it.

RH: How great a challenge does Marc Green face in rebuilding the Bulls after all the off-field problems which have blighted the club in recent years?

BS: Of course it has damaged the club and the sport, but I think it fairness to Marc and the sport, everyone has worked hard to recover that damage. The process is ongoing and will continue for as long as it takes. Marc is working as hard as he can and we will support him. The infrastructure around the club is still very strong despite the issues it has had over the last three years. That augurs well for them to perform very well if they are in the Championship next year and give themselves a real shot at getting back into Super League. I think every town or city with a sporting team always benefits if that team is successful – that’s universal. And I’m sure Bradford will be competitive in a very competitive Championship.

RH: What is the limit for overseas players in the Championship next season?

BS: Five – the same as Super League.

RH: How do you view the state of rugby league generally?

BS: I think it’s in really good health. We face our challenges like every sport does but next year is going to be an extremely exciting year. In some ways, what the clubs have learned in the past few years is an attention to sustainability. There has been some changes to the regulations on that and I think what is at the front of everyone’s mind is making sure that clubs spend what they can afford and we avoid any reputational damage that always comes with clubs in financial distress or insolvency.

Comments (18)

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12:15pm Thu 17 Jul 14

northern pig says...

Blake Solly talking up the revamped championship format for next season, is not without it's merits,it is an improvement.However,
with the difference in the central funding and the salary cap between S/L and the championship,i feel it will become like soccer where championship teams struggle to cope with life in the premiership. The whole point of the franchise system was to eradicate a yo yo system of the same teams being promoted and relegated year on year so it's not a perfect solution, just an halfway house between a fully intergrated competition.
Blake Solly talking up the revamped championship format for next season, is not without it's merits,it is an improvement.However, with the difference in the central funding and the salary cap between S/L and the championship,i feel it will become like soccer where championship teams struggle to cope with life in the premiership. The whole point of the franchise system was to eradicate a yo yo system of the same teams being promoted and relegated year on year so it's not a perfect solution, just an halfway house between a fully intergrated competition. northern pig
  • Score: 6

12:56pm Thu 17 Jul 14

Sense99 says...

The franchise system was not ideal, but it did bring some stability to our small sport, allowing clubs to development UK youth, etc. The system next year is far too complicated - the beauty of RL is that it is simple- so why make relegation and promotion so complicated.

Despite what Solly says about the parachute payments, all clubs in the Championship will work to the same salary cap (inc London and Bradford). How can the top 4 teams in the championship hope to finish higher than the bottom 4 clubs in SL when they play off in the "middle league". When the SL clubs will have the best players (less clubs to play for next year, so the SL teams should get even stronger than this year), and have a salary cap about twice as much as the championship teams. The odds are so very heavily stacked against the championship teams - it is a system that is all smoke and mirrors. I think within 3 years the RFL will decide it was a stupid idea and try something else, no doubt also dreamt up in a pub after too many beers. No wonder most of the SL clubs voted for it. It effectively makes them all safe from relegation.

Just so no-one thinks I am anti relegation and promotion I am not But it needs to be fashioned in a way that is suitable for our sport, taking into account how small it is. An openly published and transparent 3 year franchise system would be ideal, where all teams knew the fixed rules and clubs were given points for specific achievements on the pitch (grand final winner, league position, challenge cup round, crowd sizes, number academy players playing over x games, etc). There would be no "RFL opinion's" or exceptions, or clubs submitting business plans. It should be about what they did in their various leagues and nothing else.

But, when considering anything like a new promotion and relegation system, it should always be framed by the aims of the bigger picture. The issue is whether you believe in the bigger picture vision, as I do, and believe that we should try and spread RL to other counties and countries and get youngsters more involved. We need good SL teams in Wales, Scotland, France to ensure we can eventually have a sensible European contest and spread the game at the highest level. We need a proper tri-series of county games (Yorks vs Lancs). If we don't spread the sport, it will simply contract further into the M62 corridor heartland - and all we will end up with fewer, older (like me) supporters, in a few concentrated areas - Wigan, Saints, Wyre, Leeds, Hull.

And finally..

"RH: ...The recent Catalan attendance of 5,188 was the lowest home gate in the club’s Super League history. "
BS: I’d be surprised if crowds dipped too much next season... I think average crowds of around 4,000 would be perfectly viable."

Obviously Solly doesn't do averages very well ! If 5,188 was the lowest crowd ever, meaning that all other crowds must have been higher, some lots higher. How does an average of 4,000 constitute a small drop ? 5,189 to 4,000 is a 23% drop.
The franchise system was not ideal, but it did bring some stability to our small sport, allowing clubs to development UK youth, etc. The system next year is far too complicated - the beauty of RL is that it is simple- so why make relegation and promotion so complicated. Despite what Solly says about the parachute payments, all clubs in the Championship will work to the same salary cap (inc London and Bradford). How can the top 4 teams in the championship hope to finish higher than the bottom 4 clubs in SL when they play off in the "middle league". When the SL clubs will have the best players (less clubs to play for next year, so the SL teams should get even stronger than this year), and have a salary cap about twice as much as the championship teams. The odds are so very heavily stacked against the championship teams - it is a system that is all smoke and mirrors. I think within 3 years the RFL will decide it was a stupid idea and try something else, no doubt also dreamt up in a pub after too many beers. No wonder most of the SL clubs voted for it. It effectively makes them all safe from relegation. Just so no-one thinks I am anti relegation and promotion I am not But it needs to be fashioned in a way that is suitable for our sport, taking into account how small it is. An openly published and transparent 3 year franchise system would be ideal, where all teams knew the fixed rules and clubs were given points for specific achievements on the pitch (grand final winner, league position, challenge cup round, crowd sizes, number academy players playing over x games, etc). There would be no "RFL opinion's" or exceptions, or clubs submitting business plans. It should be about what they did in their various leagues and nothing else. But, when considering anything like a new promotion and relegation system, it should always be framed by the aims of the bigger picture. The issue is whether you believe in the bigger picture vision, as I do, and believe that we should try and spread RL to other counties and countries and get youngsters more involved. We need good SL teams in Wales, Scotland, France to ensure we can eventually have a sensible European contest and spread the game at the highest level. We need a proper tri-series of county games (Yorks vs Lancs). If we don't spread the sport, it will simply contract further into the M62 corridor heartland - and all we will end up with fewer, older (like me) supporters, in a few concentrated areas - Wigan, Saints, Wyre, Leeds, Hull. And finally.. "RH: ...The recent Catalan attendance of 5,188 was the lowest home gate in the club’s Super League history. " BS: I’d be surprised if crowds dipped too much next season... I think average crowds of around 4,000 would be perfectly viable." Obviously Solly doesn't do averages very well ! If 5,188 was the lowest crowd ever, meaning that all other crowds must have been higher, some lots higher. How does an average of 4,000 constitute a small drop ? 5,189 to 4,000 is a 23% drop. Sense99
  • Score: 7

1:37pm Thu 17 Jul 14

raisemeup says...

Sense99 wrote:
The franchise system was not ideal, but it did bring some stability to our small sport, allowing clubs to development UK youth, etc. The system next year is far too complicated - the beauty of RL is that it is simple- so why make relegation and promotion so complicated.

Despite what Solly says about the parachute payments, all clubs in the Championship will work to the same salary cap (inc London and Bradford). How can the top 4 teams in the championship hope to finish higher than the bottom 4 clubs in SL when they play off in the "middle league". When the SL clubs will have the best players (less clubs to play for next year, so the SL teams should get even stronger than this year), and have a salary cap about twice as much as the championship teams. The odds are so very heavily stacked against the championship teams - it is a system that is all smoke and mirrors. I think within 3 years the RFL will decide it was a stupid idea and try something else, no doubt also dreamt up in a pub after too many beers. No wonder most of the SL clubs voted for it. It effectively makes them all safe from relegation.

Just so no-one thinks I am anti relegation and promotion I am not But it needs to be fashioned in a way that is suitable for our sport, taking into account how small it is. An openly published and transparent 3 year franchise system would be ideal, where all teams knew the fixed rules and clubs were given points for specific achievements on the pitch (grand final winner, league position, challenge cup round, crowd sizes, number academy players playing over x games, etc). There would be no "RFL opinion's" or exceptions, or clubs submitting business plans. It should be about what they did in their various leagues and nothing else.

But, when considering anything like a new promotion and relegation system, it should always be framed by the aims of the bigger picture. The issue is whether you believe in the bigger picture vision, as I do, and believe that we should try and spread RL to other counties and countries and get youngsters more involved. We need good SL teams in Wales, Scotland, France to ensure we can eventually have a sensible European contest and spread the game at the highest level. We need a proper tri-series of county games (Yorks vs Lancs). If we don't spread the sport, it will simply contract further into the M62 corridor heartland - and all we will end up with fewer, older (like me) supporters, in a few concentrated areas - Wigan, Saints, Wyre, Leeds, Hull.

And finally..

"RH: ...The recent Catalan attendance of 5,188 was the lowest home gate in the club’s Super League history. "
BS: I’d be surprised if crowds dipped too much next season... I think average crowds of around 4,000 would be perfectly viable."

Obviously Solly doesn't do averages very well ! If 5,188 was the lowest crowd ever, meaning that all other crowds must have been higher, some lots higher. How does an average of 4,000 constitute a small drop ? 5,189 to 4,000 is a 23% drop.
Well said, that's about how many of the supporters think!

BS talks about a plan that's on paper, and untried in reality! RL is unlike Football and Union, as it's a people led sport.
For example the highest average Championship crowd figures at the highest, does not match SL at it's lowest?
As we see though BSs averages are different to reality, a bit like his plans?
[quote][p][bold]Sense99[/bold] wrote: The franchise system was not ideal, but it did bring some stability to our small sport, allowing clubs to development UK youth, etc. The system next year is far too complicated - the beauty of RL is that it is simple- so why make relegation and promotion so complicated. Despite what Solly says about the parachute payments, all clubs in the Championship will work to the same salary cap (inc London and Bradford). How can the top 4 teams in the championship hope to finish higher than the bottom 4 clubs in SL when they play off in the "middle league". When the SL clubs will have the best players (less clubs to play for next year, so the SL teams should get even stronger than this year), and have a salary cap about twice as much as the championship teams. The odds are so very heavily stacked against the championship teams - it is a system that is all smoke and mirrors. I think within 3 years the RFL will decide it was a stupid idea and try something else, no doubt also dreamt up in a pub after too many beers. No wonder most of the SL clubs voted for it. It effectively makes them all safe from relegation. Just so no-one thinks I am anti relegation and promotion I am not But it needs to be fashioned in a way that is suitable for our sport, taking into account how small it is. An openly published and transparent 3 year franchise system would be ideal, where all teams knew the fixed rules and clubs were given points for specific achievements on the pitch (grand final winner, league position, challenge cup round, crowd sizes, number academy players playing over x games, etc). There would be no "RFL opinion's" or exceptions, or clubs submitting business plans. It should be about what they did in their various leagues and nothing else. But, when considering anything like a new promotion and relegation system, it should always be framed by the aims of the bigger picture. The issue is whether you believe in the bigger picture vision, as I do, and believe that we should try and spread RL to other counties and countries and get youngsters more involved. We need good SL teams in Wales, Scotland, France to ensure we can eventually have a sensible European contest and spread the game at the highest level. We need a proper tri-series of county games (Yorks vs Lancs). If we don't spread the sport, it will simply contract further into the M62 corridor heartland - and all we will end up with fewer, older (like me) supporters, in a few concentrated areas - Wigan, Saints, Wyre, Leeds, Hull. And finally.. "RH: ...The recent Catalan attendance of 5,188 was the lowest home gate in the club’s Super League history. " BS: I’d be surprised if crowds dipped too much next season... I think average crowds of around 4,000 would be perfectly viable." Obviously Solly doesn't do averages very well ! If 5,188 was the lowest crowd ever, meaning that all other crowds must have been higher, some lots higher. How does an average of 4,000 constitute a small drop ? 5,189 to 4,000 is a 23% drop.[/p][/quote]Well said, that's about how many of the supporters think! BS talks about a plan that's on paper, and untried in reality! RL is unlike Football and Union, as it's a people led sport. For example the highest average Championship crowd figures at the highest, does not match SL at it's lowest? As we see though BSs averages are different to reality, a bit like his plans? raisemeup
  • Score: 2

2:22pm Thu 17 Jul 14

Bone_idle18 says...

the main thing that stick out for me is...no reward for the top team in the championship, except the "privilege" to compete in a play off against 7 other teams, 4 of which have over 505 more central funding and a £825,000 higher salary cap.

If we can't persuade some players to defer salaries to secure promotion, we're fcuk'd, next season will be the last time that Bulls or London (of the other two teams) can hope to succeed in a play off with 4 SL teams with far greater resources.

It's a really ill-conceived, convoluted attempt to generate interest and revenue by the RFL!
the main thing that stick out for me is...no reward for the top team in the championship, except the "privilege" to compete in a play off against 7 other teams, 4 of which have over 505 more central funding and a £825,000 higher salary cap. If we can't persuade some players to defer salaries to secure promotion, we're fcuk'd, next season will be the last time that Bulls or London (of the other two teams) can hope to succeed in a play off with 4 SL teams with far greater resources. It's a really ill-conceived, convoluted attempt to generate interest and revenue by the RFL! Bone_idle18
  • Score: 4

2:24pm Thu 17 Jul 14

Bullmaniac says...

raisemeup wrote:
Sense99 wrote:
The franchise system was not ideal, but it did bring some stability to our small sport, allowing clubs to development UK youth, etc. The system next year is far too complicated - the beauty of RL is that it is simple- so why make relegation and promotion so complicated.

Despite what Solly says about the parachute payments, all clubs in the Championship will work to the same salary cap (inc London and Bradford). How can the top 4 teams in the championship hope to finish higher than the bottom 4 clubs in SL when they play off in the "middle league". When the SL clubs will have the best players (less clubs to play for next year, so the SL teams should get even stronger than this year), and have a salary cap about twice as much as the championship teams. The odds are so very heavily stacked against the championship teams - it is a system that is all smoke and mirrors. I think within 3 years the RFL will decide it was a stupid idea and try something else, no doubt also dreamt up in a pub after too many beers. No wonder most of the SL clubs voted for it. It effectively makes them all safe from relegation.

Just so no-one thinks I am anti relegation and promotion I am not But it needs to be fashioned in a way that is suitable for our sport, taking into account how small it is. An openly published and transparent 3 year franchise system would be ideal, where all teams knew the fixed rules and clubs were given points for specific achievements on the pitch (grand final winner, league position, challenge cup round, crowd sizes, number academy players playing over x games, etc). There would be no "RFL opinion's" or exceptions, or clubs submitting business plans. It should be about what they did in their various leagues and nothing else.

But, when considering anything like a new promotion and relegation system, it should always be framed by the aims of the bigger picture. The issue is whether you believe in the bigger picture vision, as I do, and believe that we should try and spread RL to other counties and countries and get youngsters more involved. We need good SL teams in Wales, Scotland, France to ensure we can eventually have a sensible European contest and spread the game at the highest level. We need a proper tri-series of county games (Yorks vs Lancs). If we don't spread the sport, it will simply contract further into the M62 corridor heartland - and all we will end up with fewer, older (like me) supporters, in a few concentrated areas - Wigan, Saints, Wyre, Leeds, Hull.

And finally..

"RH: ...The recent Catalan attendance of 5,188 was the lowest home gate in the club’s Super League history. "
BS: I’d be surprised if crowds dipped too much next season... I think average crowds of around 4,000 would be perfectly viable."

Obviously Solly doesn't do averages very well ! If 5,188 was the lowest crowd ever, meaning that all other crowds must have been higher, some lots higher. How does an average of 4,000 constitute a small drop ? 5,189 to 4,000 is a 23% drop.
Well said, that's about how many of the supporters think!

BS talks about a plan that's on paper, and untried in reality! RL is unlike Football and Union, as it's a people led sport.
For example the highest average Championship crowd figures at the highest, does not match SL at it's lowest?
As we see though BSs averages are different to reality, a bit like his plans?
BS is talking B.S. this three tier system has to be one of the most convoluted ideas in the world of sport. The top Super League clubs would not have voted it through if a) it benefitted them financially and b) guaranteed their status at the top of the game. I think Bulls attendances will be around the 3k mark with the Halifax and Featherstone game pulling in 5k. The board need to make sure they cut their cloth accordingly and don't gamble on achieving attendances or success on the pitch for that matter.
[quote][p][bold]raisemeup[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Sense99[/bold] wrote: The franchise system was not ideal, but it did bring some stability to our small sport, allowing clubs to development UK youth, etc. The system next year is far too complicated - the beauty of RL is that it is simple- so why make relegation and promotion so complicated. Despite what Solly says about the parachute payments, all clubs in the Championship will work to the same salary cap (inc London and Bradford). How can the top 4 teams in the championship hope to finish higher than the bottom 4 clubs in SL when they play off in the "middle league". When the SL clubs will have the best players (less clubs to play for next year, so the SL teams should get even stronger than this year), and have a salary cap about twice as much as the championship teams. The odds are so very heavily stacked against the championship teams - it is a system that is all smoke and mirrors. I think within 3 years the RFL will decide it was a stupid idea and try something else, no doubt also dreamt up in a pub after too many beers. No wonder most of the SL clubs voted for it. It effectively makes them all safe from relegation. Just so no-one thinks I am anti relegation and promotion I am not But it needs to be fashioned in a way that is suitable for our sport, taking into account how small it is. An openly published and transparent 3 year franchise system would be ideal, where all teams knew the fixed rules and clubs were given points for specific achievements on the pitch (grand final winner, league position, challenge cup round, crowd sizes, number academy players playing over x games, etc). There would be no "RFL opinion's" or exceptions, or clubs submitting business plans. It should be about what they did in their various leagues and nothing else. But, when considering anything like a new promotion and relegation system, it should always be framed by the aims of the bigger picture. The issue is whether you believe in the bigger picture vision, as I do, and believe that we should try and spread RL to other counties and countries and get youngsters more involved. We need good SL teams in Wales, Scotland, France to ensure we can eventually have a sensible European contest and spread the game at the highest level. We need a proper tri-series of county games (Yorks vs Lancs). If we don't spread the sport, it will simply contract further into the M62 corridor heartland - and all we will end up with fewer, older (like me) supporters, in a few concentrated areas - Wigan, Saints, Wyre, Leeds, Hull. And finally.. "RH: ...The recent Catalan attendance of 5,188 was the lowest home gate in the club’s Super League history. " BS: I’d be surprised if crowds dipped too much next season... I think average crowds of around 4,000 would be perfectly viable." Obviously Solly doesn't do averages very well ! If 5,188 was the lowest crowd ever, meaning that all other crowds must have been higher, some lots higher. How does an average of 4,000 constitute a small drop ? 5,189 to 4,000 is a 23% drop.[/p][/quote]Well said, that's about how many of the supporters think! BS talks about a plan that's on paper, and untried in reality! RL is unlike Football and Union, as it's a people led sport. For example the highest average Championship crowd figures at the highest, does not match SL at it's lowest? As we see though BSs averages are different to reality, a bit like his plans?[/p][/quote]BS is talking B.S. this three tier system has to be one of the most convoluted ideas in the world of sport. The top Super League clubs would not have voted it through if a) it benefitted them financially and b) guaranteed their status at the top of the game. I think Bulls attendances will be around the 3k mark with the Halifax and Featherstone game pulling in 5k. The board need to make sure they cut their cloth accordingly and don't gamble on achieving attendances or success on the pitch for that matter. Bullmaniac
  • Score: 1

3:19pm Thu 17 Jul 14

Mike Strutter says...

Except anyone at the Catalans game including me knows there was nowhere near 5188 at the game.

The fact they are allowed to top up their attendance figure with the missing season ticket holders helps the number.

There were 2500 - 3000 at that game at best.
Except anyone at the Catalans game including me knows there was nowhere near 5188 at the game. The fact they are allowed to top up their attendance figure with the missing season ticket holders helps the number. There were 2500 - 3000 at that game at best. Mike Strutter
  • Score: 0

3:19pm Thu 17 Jul 14

bully4us says...

A salary cap of £1m is more than we spent this year. There are ways of spending over that and it not showing on the books.
Look at the Wakey Vs Widnes game last week. They were awful. These are the type of teams the top teams in the championship WILL be playing. Four teams that have lost most games all season Vs four teams that have won most games. If the Bulls sign good players and spend the full cap plus offer a few supermarket openings onto some contracts we can match the bottom four SL clubs in spending. Get them at home in 4 games and yes we can beat them. 5k supporters at the last home game at a non-event. How many will turn up against Fax, Fev, Leigh and some of the others. 6k+ would easily be possible. Supporters watch winning teams. Get into the top two and those play off games will attract big crowds. If Green gets the commercial side right we might just surprise some people who always look on the down side. Look on the bright side for a few minutes. It could be a very interesting season visiting old adversaries and then having a fun end to the season. Glass half full!
A salary cap of £1m is more than we spent this year. There are ways of spending over that and it not showing on the books. Look at the Wakey Vs Widnes game last week. They were awful. These are the type of teams the top teams in the championship WILL be playing. Four teams that have lost most games all season Vs four teams that have won most games. If the Bulls sign good players and spend the full cap plus offer a few supermarket openings onto some contracts we can match the bottom four SL clubs in spending. Get them at home in 4 games and yes we can beat them. 5k supporters at the last home game at a non-event. How many will turn up against Fax, Fev, Leigh and some of the others. 6k+ would easily be possible. Supporters watch winning teams. Get into the top two and those play off games will attract big crowds. If Green gets the commercial side right we might just surprise some people who always look on the down side. Look on the bright side for a few minutes. It could be a very interesting season visiting old adversaries and then having a fun end to the season. Glass half full! bully4us
  • Score: 4

3:32pm Thu 17 Jul 14

Bone_idle18 says...

Still should be top club up, bottom down, and play off for the last SL place.

Imagine if we finished top, and then lost the play-off final to a decision like we got against Leeds in the millennium game?

It's a really badly thought out league structure.
Still should be top club up, bottom down, and play off for the last SL place. Imagine if we finished top, and then lost the play-off final to a decision like we got against Leeds in the millennium game? It's a really badly thought out league structure. Bone_idle18
  • Score: 2

4:41pm Thu 17 Jul 14

A650 says...

Will dual reg still exist? If so that could cause a very uneven playing field at the business end of the season.
Will dual reg still exist? If so that could cause a very uneven playing field at the business end of the season. A650
  • Score: 2

4:54pm Thu 17 Jul 14

hunsworthbull says...

Woods, Solly and Rimmer have all helped to kill Rugby League no wonder Woods has bailed out to the international scene. We have no future chance to compete against the southern hemisphere. Average super league attendances prove its dieing.
Woods, Solly and Rimmer have all helped to kill Rugby League no wonder Woods has bailed out to the international scene. We have no future chance to compete against the southern hemisphere. Average super league attendances prove its dieing. hunsworthbull
  • Score: 2

10:06pm Thu 17 Jul 14

Bradfordbull72 says...

Blake Solly and your two fat friends go f##k yourself,
Blake Solly and your two fat friends go f##k yourself, Bradfordbull72
  • Score: 0

10:30pm Thu 17 Jul 14

Bradfordbull72 says...

BS you say you ll support them , when will the change of direction from yourselves begin.
Always lots of comments on crowd numbers at odsal never a mention wakefield had less than 4000 in a game potentially giving them a top eight spot.
Whilst i admit bulls have neen run shambolic that pales into insignificance compared to how the rfl have treat them. I don t recall a single helping hand from the rfl or any other club throughout these last two seasons, they have in unison divied up and spent the bulls sky money, picked players up for peanuts, as in the case of kopcak illegally yet unpunished. In return the odd one lent us a squad player needing some practice or one returning from injury.
I can t wait for some of these to go through their tough days.
Rugby league the game of self interest.
BS you say you ll support them , when will the change of direction from yourselves begin. Always lots of comments on crowd numbers at odsal never a mention wakefield had less than 4000 in a game potentially giving them a top eight spot. Whilst i admit bulls have neen run shambolic that pales into insignificance compared to how the rfl have treat them. I don t recall a single helping hand from the rfl or any other club throughout these last two seasons, they have in unison divied up and spent the bulls sky money, picked players up for peanuts, as in the case of kopcak illegally yet unpunished. In return the odd one lent us a squad player needing some practice or one returning from injury. I can t wait for some of these to go through their tough days. Rugby league the game of self interest. Bradfordbull72
  • Score: -1

11:04pm Thu 17 Jul 14

bradfordbronco says...

The whole point of bringing in relegation was to get rid of "pointless" fixtures. We've known for several weeks now who the two clubs were going to be and the result is almost half a season of "pointless" fixtures!!

The franchise system enabled all clubs to spend the same and sign players on three year deals. Also offer sponsors three year packages

The new systems means when the promotion play offs come around you have four teams competing on lower player budgets. How can that be fair?

Also the new systems means the top 6 or so clubs know they will be in the top 8 so can offer players long term deals unlike all the other yo yo clubs who can't guarantee where they will be playing the following year so they will eventually get the lesser players. The end result will be a two tier super league between the stronger teams getting even stronger and the rest falling by the wayside.

Like most people i believe the "new" format will be ditched in favour of franchising. It works so well in Australia where they try to expand the league NOT decrease it like SL has done.

More clubs in the top flight should lead to more TV money not less. This is the whole reason we are failing. Its people like Solly NOT doing their job and securing sponsors for the game that has caused the game to go back into its shell instead of building the sport like the Aussies have
The whole point of bringing in relegation was to get rid of "pointless" fixtures. We've known for several weeks now who the two clubs were going to be and the result is almost half a season of "pointless" fixtures!! The franchise system enabled all clubs to spend the same and sign players on three year deals. Also offer sponsors three year packages The new systems means when the promotion play offs come around you have four teams competing on lower player budgets. How can that be fair? Also the new systems means the top 6 or so clubs know they will be in the top 8 so can offer players long term deals unlike all the other yo yo clubs who can't guarantee where they will be playing the following year so they will eventually get the lesser players. The end result will be a two tier super league between the stronger teams getting even stronger and the rest falling by the wayside. Like most people i believe the "new" format will be ditched in favour of franchising. It works so well in Australia where they try to expand the league NOT decrease it like SL has done. More clubs in the top flight should lead to more TV money not less. This is the whole reason we are failing. Its people like Solly NOT doing their job and securing sponsors for the game that has caused the game to go back into its shell instead of building the sport like the Aussies have bradfordbronco
  • Score: 2

8:03am Fri 18 Jul 14

mmmbeefy says...

I can't believe anyone thinks that this middle 8 idea is a return to promotion and relegation. It's not, it's just the illusion. It's like a boxing match where one of the boxers has a hand tied behind his back and a patch over one eye
I can't believe anyone thinks that this middle 8 idea is a return to promotion and relegation. It's not, it's just the illusion. It's like a boxing match where one of the boxers has a hand tied behind his back and a patch over one eye mmmbeefy
  • Score: 2

8:13am Fri 18 Jul 14

-HCK3R- says...

Hope you got the interview recored Ross otherwise he will probably deny saying anything you printed !
Hope you got the interview recored Ross otherwise he will probably deny saying anything you printed ! -HCK3R-
  • Score: 2

8:21am Fri 18 Jul 14

raisemeup says...

Warning signals... Every time the RFL have said they would help the BULLs everything has turned out wrong... please do not help us - we will find our own way thanks very much.
Warning signals... Every time the RFL have said they would help the BULLs everything has turned out wrong... please do not help us - we will find our own way thanks very much. raisemeup
  • Score: 1

8:21am Fri 18 Jul 14

raisemeup says...

Warning signals... Every time the RFL have said they would help the BULLs everything has turned out wrong... please do not help us - we will find our own way thanks very much.
Warning signals... Every time the RFL have said they would help the BULLs everything has turned out wrong... please do not help us - we will find our own way thanks very much. raisemeup
  • Score: 0

9:00am Fri 18 Jul 14

fedupwiththeBS says...

Mike Strutter wrote:
Except anyone at the Catalans game including me knows there was nowhere near 5188 at the game.

The fact they are allowed to top up their attendance figure with the missing season ticket holders helps the number.

There were 2500 - 3000 at that game at best.
there have been a number of games that I have attended in the past two seasons where the biggest surprise on the day was when the crowd was announced.
[quote][p][bold]Mike Strutter[/bold] wrote: Except anyone at the Catalans game including me knows there was nowhere near 5188 at the game. The fact they are allowed to top up their attendance figure with the missing season ticket holders helps the number. There were 2500 - 3000 at that game at best.[/p][/quote]there have been a number of games that I have attended in the past two seasons where the biggest surprise on the day was when the crowd was announced. fedupwiththeBS
  • Score: 0

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