THIS time last year, everything was new to Steve Price.

New club. New players. New rivals. New country.

Twelve months down the line and having led Warrington Wolves to both major finals last year, the former St George Illawarra boss feels he has developed in his profession and has a squad at his disposal that better represents him as a coach.

The time for that to show on the field, of course, is now.

“I hope I’m a better coach than last year. I at least know how to get from Warrington to Padgate a bit better!” he said.

“I understand the game better now. You get more of a feel for opposition players and teams.

“I know I can keep getting better though and as a coaching group, we need to keep evolving.

“We need to keep challenging each other and staying ahead of the game.

“I’ve got a tremendously hard-working coaching staff who do keep pushing each other.”

“It’s obviously more of the players I wanted to bring in and I’m very happy with what they’ve brought.

“They have brought a different type of personality and they are extremely hard-working.

“I’m really pleased with how they have gone about their business.”

When he first arrived at the club, it was amidst a backdrop of low expectations.

The club had just parted company with the long-serving Tony Smith after following up a 2016 in which the Challenge Cup Final and Super League Grand Final were reached with a season of struggle, leading to a battle for survival in the Middle 8s.

They are confronted with a similar scenario now as they have the heartache of two more major final defeats in quick succession to shake off.

Price, however, believes the squad has the mental toughness about it to avoid a repeat scenario.

“As a club, we set high standards. We want to be a benchmark footy club in years to come,” he said.

“We want to be challenging for the big games and winning premierships.

“We can’t control what’s happened in the past. That’s irrelevant now.

“All we can do is focus on the here and now and that’s what we’re doing.

“We’re a far more advanced rugby team that where we were this time last year.

“The players understand the systems and structures. They are very clear on that.

“We’ve changed up a few things, which you have to do in order to evolve.”