Charnley: We want to silence the commentators

Josh Charnley is close pals with Leeds' Zak Hardaker
Josh Charnley is close pals with Leeds' Zak Hardaker

JOSH Charnley says victory tonight would serve notice of Warriors’ title-credentials.

Wigan are seeking their third straight victory over pace-setters Leeds in front of the Sky Sports cameras tonight.

And England wing ace Charnley reckons a win may remind the rest of the competition – and commentators – that they mean business this year.

He said: “Going over there and doing a job on them would be good to shut everyone up who’s saying they’re the team to beat.

“We’ve beaten them twice already, and we’re confident and playing quite well.”

The past two wins were achieved at the DW and the Newcastle Magic, and Charnley admits a win in the Headingley cauldron would send out a louder message than those previous, impressive triumphs.

“Yeah, massively,” he said. “I like playing there, it’s a good atmosphere.

“Commentators are always going on about Leeds being the team to beat – they’re in a good position, they’ll be confident – but we want to cause an upset and give them a bit of a kicking.”

Past encounters between these sides rarely disappoint. Wigan have won their last four games, while Challenge Cup finallists Leeds are buoyed by a 49-10 hammering of Warrington a week ago.

“They’re the two best teams playing each other, and when that happens everyone gets revved up, we all dig in and look forward to it,” said Charnley.

“They’ve come off an impressive win, we won at the weekend. It’s always good going across the border, it’s one of the best stadiums.”

Second-placed Wigan can move level on points with Leeds if they win tonight. St Helens – one point behind the Warriors – host Hull FC this evening.

Charnley is close friends with Leeds No.1 Zak Hardaker, who has been in strong form for the Rhinos of late.

The 24-year-old added: “He’s been out for a few weeks with an ankle injury, and now he’s come back and proved he’s up there with the best full-backs in the comp’.

“We’re very similar personalities, we’re both daft and we made those videos when we were in the England camp.”

Prop Ben Flower is set to return to the Wigan side but Joe Burgess and Dan Sarginson are still missing. Kick-off is at 8pm.