Warrington Wolves 2024 season preview
2023 was a tale of two halves for the Wire. Eight straight wins to start the season had the fans dreaming of glory, but an eight-game losing streak throughout June and August saw the wheels come off in spectacular style, and not only did coach, Daryl Powell lose his job, but big-name signing Josh McGuire was sent packing back to Australia after picking up a 12-game ban – his second long-term ban of the year. Warrington did hold on to limp into the top six, but St. Helens sent them packing in week one.
2023 position: 6th
Lachlan Fitzgibbon (Newcastle Knights), Rodrick Tai (Dolphins), Jordan Crowther (Wakefield Trinity), Zane Musgrove (St George Illawarra Dragons), Wesley Bruines (St Helens), Brad Dwyer (Hull FC), Sam Powell (Wigan Warriors)
Daryl Clark (St Helens), Greg Minikin (Featherstone Rovers), Riley Dean (Mackay Cutters), Peter Mata’utia (Retired)
Players to watch
2023 was the season when Matty Ashton firmly established himself in the side, and his 20 tries were enough to earn him a place in the England squad at the end of the year. There’s no doubt he’ll be a starting winger for the Wire again in 2024, and his electric pace should see him easily into double figures again for tries.
With more than 100 appearances in the NRL under his belt, much will be expected of Lachlan Fitzgibbon this year. Warrington’s Aussie imports have been a mixed bag in recent years, so expect Fitzgibbon to either be a superstar…or on a flight home by June.
Leon Hayes has been given the number 18 shirt for 2024, and the 19-year-old halfback could be first in line for a starting spot if George Williams or Josh Drinkwater pick up any knocks. A solid goalkicker to boot, Hayes could be a useful backup as the season wears on.
Our prediction – 5th
Warrington are one of the teams I’m most looking forward to seeing this year, given that it’s Sam Burgess’ first head coach role. With the quality of their squad, anything less than a top six finish would be a flop, and although Burgess is untested as a coach, if he can project even half of his winning mentality on the players, then a play-off spot is a given. I’m expecting them to have a good crack at both competitions this year, but when it comes down to the business end of the year, I can still see some of the teams around them just having a bit too much for the Wire.