Salford announce raft of new faces
Big-spending Salford City Reds have announced 12 new signings as part of a major re-launch of the Super League club.
The list of new faces, unveiled at a press conference at Salford City Stadium, were headed by England internationals Gareth Hock and Rangi Chase.
They will be joined at the renamed Red Devils ahead of the 2014 season by Warrington Wolves captain Adrian Morley, Wakefield Trinity Wildcats scrum-half Tim Smith, St Helens duo Francis Meli and Tony Puletua, overseas trio Jake Mullaney, Junior Sa'u and Steve Rapira, London Broncos hooker Tommy Lee and Batley Bulldogs pair Paul Walton and Greg Johnson.
Salford say the new signings between them boast 1,000 Super League appearances, more than 700 NRL matches and over 100 international caps.
They were announced by owner Marwan Koukash to an audience of 450 fans and corporate guests at the Salford City Stadium.
"We have recruited some great experience with our international players," head coach Brian Noble said.
"We have also added some exceptional young talent from home and abroad and we are adding these to some of our existing players who have performed admirably this season.
"I am really excited about the prospects for this season. It is going to be one hell of a ride."
Salford captain Martin Gleeson, who is one of the handful of players to be retained, said: "The club have done an unbelievable job to get this quality of player here."
Chase, the 2011 Man of Steel who will play his last match for Castleford Tigers at Wakefield on Sunday, admitted it was a relief to end the uncertainty over his future.
"It's a big day for the club and it's an honour to be here," he said. "It's a relief to get it out, it's been the worst-kept secret.
"It's very exciting waiting for next year to happen. It's going to be a big year and I can't wait to be part of the transformation of the club. The sky is the limit for us."
Hock, who will play his final match for Widnes Vikings against Salford tomorrow, was due to join Australian club Parramatta for 2014 but pulled out of the move for personal reasons.
"I've got a little girl on the way so I had to change plans," he said.