League Freaks 2013 Super League Season Preview

So the 2012 Super League season wasn’t the best, and heading into 2013 there is nothing to indicate the upcoming season will be any better. Lets not start off on a bad note though!

Sure the competition still doesn’t have a naming rights sponsor and clubs are bleeding red ink like every day is that time of the month. Still, there are things to look forward to. Like Australia’s ultimate triumph at the season ending World Cup and…well, lets focus on Super League shall we?

It is not all that difficult to pick who will win Super League. You look at which teams pick the eyes out of every other clubs, which ones don’t lose any players they don’t want to, and you look back at the history of the competition as it has fewer winners than come from those UK lotteries I keep being told I’ve won via e-mails.

There are really three different groups of teams in Super League this season. I’ll talk about them after you have looked at my predicted 2013 Super League ladder:

1. Leeds Rhinos
2. Warrington Wolves
3. St Helens
4. Catalan Dragons
5. Hull FC
6. Wigan
7. Huddersfield Giants
8.Bradford Bulls
9. Widnes Vikings
10. Wakefield Wildcats
11. Castlefax Tigers
12. London Broncos
13. Hull KR
14. Salford Reds

You have Leeds, Warrington and St Helens, all of whom can win. Sure St Helens need a bit of a kick along if they are going to join the top two, but they are due for a decent season and under Nathan Brown they will be fired up this season.

You then have the Catalan Dragons, Hull FC, Wigan and maybe Huddersfield who at times might get some big wins and look like they could be contenders, but deep down we all known they are not even close. Wigan in particular will suffer this season I think. On top of Sam Tomkins signing a deal to play Rugby Union, they just look like they have started to stagnate and hold onto players that haven’t progressed since they entered them competition and good young players.

Then you have everyone else, basically all the teams who at any time it wouldn’t come as a huge surprise if they went bust mid season. Granted some of them have been given cash injections by wealthy backers who like throwing money into a burning pit of fire, but they still look like a group of clubs on life support don’t they?

Personally, I blame Soccer, Rugby Union and the BBC for their plight. Those bastards…

The Return Of Eddie, Stevo And Phil Clarke
Its a World Cup year so I’m really looking forward to them all describing everyone as an “international”, forgetting the fact they are talking about players born in either England or Australia. They’ll make Super League sound like its a who’s who of international Rugby League. It will be a good laugh.

Then we will have Phil Clarke who will be doubled over in bliss every time Wigan play the ball correctly. Personally I find it entertaining. If every time Phil Clarke mentioned how great Wigan is you take a sip of that piss weak excuse you Poms call beer, you’ll find yourself needing your stomach pumped by the 20 minute mark to avoid alcohol poisoning.

At least he gives Shaun McRae less of a chance to speak!

International Origin
Who cares.

The Challenge Cup Final
It is the oldest competition in Rugby League and the one most open to betting scandals that no one is willing to address. Still, it does attract a lot of attention, for the final anyway. People will talk about how they can improve the Challenge Cup competition but nothing will change. Change is bad. can’t have change!

Anyway I think St Helens will win it this season. Why? Why not?

The Super League Playoffs
Only 6 teams will miss out on making the playoffs and this afford the top sides an opportunity to rest players until the one or two games of the season that actually hold any consequence  I personally think that close games that hold your interest for more than five minutes are over rated anyway. Surely the lop sided scorelines are big ratings winners in the places across Great Britain that haven’t got a Super League team anywhere near them though, and that is what really matters.

Man Of Steel: Kevin Sinfield
Greatness comes in many forms, and sometimes it disguises itself as an under skilled, below average loose forward that can’t do much outside of kicking goals. However, as the best player in the world, and possibly ever, there is no doubt Kevin Sinfield will take out the Man Of Steel award this season. As 2013 drags on and Sinfield imposes his will on the competition, his rivals will fall at his feet and he will stand triumphant over the competition like the colossus.

The 2013 Super League Grand Final Winner Is…
The Leeds Rhinos! I know, I know, I’m going out on a limb with this one.

Warrington fans will be pissed off about this one. They always are. Every single season. At least St Helens fans know their role in the grand scheme of things. If they make the Grand Final they’ll already be selling t-shirts that say “Number Two In 2013”.

Leeds Rhinos fans shouldn’t get too full of themselves though. It wasn’t too long ago no one could stop the Bradford Bulls!

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