The Sheffield Eagles ‘environment’ has stopped director of rugby Mark Aston recruiting new faces but that could soon be about to change.
Aston has long been championing the idea of bringing new players into the club ever since the Easter Monday defeat against Dewsbury Rams.
After being thwarted in his initial attempts to bring in two players on loan, the Eagles chief switched his focus on trying to improve the fortunes of his current crop, in favour of re-entering the market.
Despite another defeat last Friday at home to Bradford Bulls, there was a noticeable spring in the Eagles’ step.
And the change in attitude could lead to the 48-year-old believing that the mood is now right to add this squad.
“We only have a thin squad haven’t we?” he told The Star.
“We have always been looking for people to come in but the environment hasn’t been right – that’s why we haven’t brought anyone in. I have to say that now the environment has taken a U-turn after the Bradford performance, so we can now start building and bringing people in.”
The Eagles put in an encouraging performance last week, indicating a potential turning point in their season as Aston looks to capitalise on a significantly improved display. New skipper Steve Thorpe faces two months out on the sidelines with a broken cheekbone.
That gives Aston another reason to revise his recent plan on the transfer front, as he confirmed:
“We are certainly looking to add to the squad and getting the injuries like Steven’s has made it apparent that the squad is getting thinner. We are always looking.”
Much will depend on Saturday’s performance in the Summer Bash encounter with high-flying London Broncos at Blackpool FC’s Bloomfield Road.
Without Thorpe, new vice-captain Quentin Laulu-Togagae will lead the side, but Aston has called on others to help maintain the standards set against Bradford.
“I thought that the likes of Scott Wheeldon really jumped up and rallied around to come up with a performance,” he added.
“That’s what I’ve been looking for. When we made mistakes against Bradford we kept turning up for each other. In the past when we have made mistakes we have just given in. I thought that a lot of people stood up which is a good sign.”