Farrell’s frank words were a reality check for Wigan players after Catalans defeat
Liam Farrell has lifted the lid on the frank conversations he believes will put Wigan’s title charge firmly back on track.
They take on Hull KR tonight in front of their home crowd for the first time in 15 months.
It will be the Warriors’ first match since being gunned down 48-0 by Catalans in the south of France last month.
And vastly-experienced forward Farrell has referred to that mauling as a “reality check”, admitting their form had been on the slide when they scraped wins in the weeks before.
And he said: “We’ve got to put it right now. We’ve been given a reality check.
“After the game I had a few words to say to the lads about being honest with each other. I think they’ve taken a lot from it.
“It was a huge disappointment, if you’d asked us to play a day later we would have.
“I think when you take a bird’s eye view of our results, with one loss in the league so far, I’d have probably taken it (before the season).
“But the last month has been disappointing, our
performances have been getting worse and we had to address it, and we’ve done that.
“We were in a bit of a slump, our penalties and errors were creeping up and we came up against a very talented Catalans side and we crumbled under pressure.
“It’s not going to be anything flashy, more about a lot of simple things done really well - I think a lot of people have a lot to prove that we’re still a good team and it was just a blip in France.”
Wigan’s last match in front of a crowd at the DW Stadium was also against Hull KR, when they ran out 30-16 winners more than 15 months ago.
But the Robins have sprung a few surprises already this season and head into tonight’s match having posted 40 points in their last two matches, during which winger Ryan Hall - Farrell’s former England team-mate - climbed to the top of the tryscoring chart.
“When I saw some of their signings, and the players they had, I thought they could cause teams some threats,” said Farrell.
“Tony Smith said it himself, he likes them to have some free rein and when you’ve got that mindset they can be a danger and so we need to make sure we don’t give them cheap territory.
“Forget Ryan’s try-scoring for a minute, he’s also causing trouble with his metres with the ball.
“He’s probably the best winger the league has had for over a decade, he’s almost like an extra forward with the size of him.
“It’s one thing knowing what he’s going to do and it’s another stopping him.”
The return of centre Oliver Gildart will allow Farrell to revert back to his preferred position in the second-row.
Farrell added: “It’s exciting to see Gilly back.
“He is without doubt one of the best centres in the league on his day.”