Published originally by NWML
The North West Men’s League could be poised to establish a rivalry in Manchester according to Mancunians Team Manager Alec Herron.
Mancunians host East Manchester Rangers on Saturday and are looking for revenge having lost the reverse fixture 30-28 on the opening day of the season.
“This is the game that we’ve all been looking forward too,” Herron admitted.
“Until earlier in the year there hadn’t been a Manchester derby in over 70 years.
“We lost that match in quite controversial circumstances having conceded a try in the last 20 seconds on the back of a penalty.
“That result really hurt but we’re looking for the win this time and in saying that I think rugby league in Manchester really needs some rivalries.
“This will only be our second competitive match against the Rangers but I believe a rivalry will emerge as both clubs progress.”
Herron also believes that both teams have come a long way since the season began in March.
He added: “We come into this match on the back of a defeat to Rochdale but the confidence is there because we had a couple of good results prior to that.
“I don’t know if it’s just a coincidence but the fortunes of both teams seem to have changed at the same time.
“We need to be wary that East Manchester have also picked up a couple of wins but I feel that we can up our game and get the result.”
Herron attributed some of the club’s development to the fact that last season’s Rugby League World Cup Final was held in the city.
“In previous years we’ve had around 10 players attending pre-season training but that doubled if not trebled this season,” he said.
“I would certainly say that the World Cup capitalised the interest of the city and made more people aware of our sport.
“As a club Mancunians have been looking to build on that by going into schools and promoting the club in the wider community.”
This week’s match between Mancunians and East Manchester Rangers is free to spectators.
Kick off 3,30pm, Hough End Centre, M21 7SX.