Salford City Reds head coach Brian Noble admitted he was under no illusions as to the task facing his side after league-leaders Wigan Warriors cruised to a comprehensive home victory.
England stars Josh Charnley and Sam Tomkins scored two tries apiece as the Warriors ran in nine, with the 21-year-old winger adding five conversions – Adam Walne’s late converted try the Reds’ only consolation.
But Noble – who believes there were still some positive individual performances to take away – claimed he was relishing the challenge of turning the Red Devils around.
“It was a reality check for all of us and the commitment has to start on Monday to get better every week.
“Compliments to Wigan – that’s the bar we have to aspire to. They’re physically very good, structurally very sound and they just had a little too much prowess.
“But we have a pulse and we can work on that.
“I’m certainly looking forward to the challenge and there was nothing I hadn’t seen that I didn’t expect.
“I fully understand where we’re at and where we need to go to and I’m pretty confident that I can make strides both this year and certainly next year.”
Wigan flew out the traps and were in front within two minutes when Charnley capped a flowing passing move by skipping inside Marc Sneyd’s tackle to score.
Welsh international Ben Flower broke the line to score seven minutes later and Anthony Gelling made it 12-0 on the quarter-hour.
Former Salford man Matty Smith failed to convert any tries but the Warriors continued to press with Tomkins darting between two tackles to add a fourth just past the half-hour.
Liam Farrell added a fifth on the stroke of half-time and Charnley – with his first kick – added the extras.
Charnley capped a great passing move to score his second try ten minutes after the break, which he converted himself.
On 56 minutes Parramatta-bound Lee Mossop grabbed a score just next to the posts and Tomkins eased through for his second just past the hour.
Charnley converted both the straightforward kicks and maintained his 100% record after Blake Green’s score on 72 minutes.
Walne spared the Red Devils a whitewash-defeat with just a minute remaining however, completing a move which youngster Theo Fages started by scoring under the posts – Sneyd converted.
Noble insists he will not be spending Reds’ owner Dr Marwan Koukash’s pocket-full of cash too soon however as he bids to bring long-term success to Salford.
“There are two reasons I won’t be spending too soon,” he said.
“The availability of the right players has to be right and secondly I gave a commitment to the current players to both look at them and not bring in players that were probably worse than what we have there.
“I wouldn’t want a short-term fix. Whoever comes to the club needs to be here for a while.
“Throughout the season it’s difficult to get players of the calibre to improve the team so you’ve got to work with what you’ve got in most cases.”
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