WARRINGTON Wolves’ youngsters need to go through the pain barrier to emulate the success of the predecessors.

Boss Tony Smith said Wolves’ former Challenge Cup-winning and Grand Final-reaching stars did not always hit top form, but learned from their mistakes.

Now, with a much-changed squad from the one who were beaten by Wigan Warriors at Old Trafford last year, Smith believes his newcomers can learn from their own hurt.

“We’re not exactly the same team we were Grand Final-wise,” he said. “We have seven or eight from the Grand Final and a lot of the other guys or more senior players are on the sidelines at the moment. When we get a few of those back we’ll be fine.

“It hurts at the moment but it’s good experience for these younger guys and sometimes you go through a little bit of pain to gain that.

“Some of the players that have moved on that have been referred to from our place, they weren’t all firing on all cylinders throughout their careers.

“You’ve got to gain some of this experience and unfortunately we’re going through a bit of pain to gain that experience, but we’re confident we’ll learn from it and gain from it and come back stronger.”

Wolves have been through five half back combinations this season with Chris Bridge partnering Gareth O’Brien in the loss to Bradford Bulls.

But Smith is refusing to use that as an excuse and feels his side need to ‘toughen up’.

“That hurts a bit, it is what it is and we’re not complaining about it,” he explained. “We’ve got some experienced players who aren’t there for us at the moment and we have to make do.

“Bradford did that, they were missing experienced players – we need to toughen up.”