Wigan Warriors can dominate Super League, predicts Adrian Lam
The Warriors coach has spent the weekend coming to terms with Friday's agoning 8-4 defeat against St Helens in the Grand Final.
That loss ended a run of five successive victories which propelled them to the top of the table and into the title-decider.
He said: "Since lockdown, we have been a complete beast as a rugby league team. There are some really positive signs.
"Even though everyone is disappointed, I feel you will see a completely different Wigan outfit over the next 12 months.
You will see a team that can dominate Super League.
"I don't want to put it out there too much and (sounding) arrogant, but I just feel we've taken a big step in the second half of the season.
"This loss, as heartbreaking as it is, will motivate us and I think we can get ourselves back in this position next year and change that result."
Lam, named Coach of the Year this season, is "confident" he will still be leading the side then.
Meanwhile, Bateman - who has spent the last two seasons at Canberra Raiders - returned to the UK yesterday. He posted a picture on social media of his reunion with his family including daughter Millie.
"Waited 11 long months for this," he wrote. "God it's good to have my little girl back in my arms again and to be home with the family."
Sean O'Loughlin retired after Friday's Grand Final while Ben Flower (to join Leigh), Joe Burgess and Jack Wells (both Salford) are leaving.