Author and Warrington Wolves fan Rob Watson – aka ‘Spirit of 55’ – has his say on Friday’s defeat to St Helens…

EVERYONE knew that it was going to be the toughest test of the season.

Despite the lopsided score line, I was less disappointed with this one than I was with the loss the previous week.

This time at least there was more of a togetherness about the performance and an increased intensity. There looked to be a determination to stand up to Saints, as we have seen so often in recent years.

Eventually though, Saints ground them down in both defence and attack.

Wire still struggled to go forward and make good yardage with the ball. They will all know that they have to find some way of generating a lot more go-forward if they are to have any decent chance of some success this season.

Whether it is a case of more runners in motion around the ball, more offloads and short passes or coming up with more variation of plays around the play the ball or any other idea, something has to change.

As the night wore on, it was Wire’s skill level rather than effort level that let them down this week.

Way too many inaccurate passes, particularly ones that were too low, either caused handling errors or moves to break down because of the timing lost when the player receiving the ball had to adjust.

If it was an old-fashioned school report, I would probably be giving them a B for effort and a D for attainment.

How many of those handling errors come from the lack of go-forward is always difficult to tell exactly, but it did not explain all of them.

Wire created a few chances for themselves with breaks and half breaks – no doubt too many for Kristian Woolf’s liking – yet a lack of execution with the final pass from Wire, along with impressive scramble defence from Saints, meant Wire went home without registering a try.

Wire look like a team who is always going to struggle against a top side.

With their next five fixtures being against teams that they would have been backing themselves to finish above at the start of the season, those games will go a long way to showing us how likely a top four or five finish is this year.

Starting with Saturday’s game against Wakefield, which could be important for the momentum of the season.

Lose that and it will be three in a row and people will be angry that we cannot even beat Wakefield. Win that game and they will move to four wins and two losses, with the defeats coming against last season’s top two teams.

As always, only the players and the coaches can fix any problems and make improvements, the rest of us have to settle for watching and hoping from one week to the next.

Is now a good moment to remind ourselves of that time not so long ago when we were not allowed to go and watch, and we were saying how much we would appreciate simply being able to attend a match again?