IT’S not long since it was Warrington Wolves looking down upon the rest and setting the standard for this Super League season.

Fast forward a few months and they look as far away from that mark as they have been.

The last time they met Catalans Dragons in the league, they appeared to be serenely cruising to the League Leaders’ Shield after what was the undoubted high point of the campaign so far.

Players, coaches and fans were united in celebration and harmony – surely nothing could go wrong.

And yet it has.

As Catalans visited for the return fixture 118 days later, they faced a Wire side low on both form and confidence whose head coach has been dispensed with in front of a fan base for whom apathy levels are sky-high.

So much so that by the time defeat was confirmed, the atmosphere was not as toxic has it had been at times during Daryl Powell’s reign. There was an eerie silence – almost a depressed acceptance that this is where things are right now.

Gary Chambers acknowledged there was little he could do to change things structurally in the two training sessions he has had as interim head coach but he did promise improvement, although it could not get any worse than the horror show at Wakefield that led to Powell’s dismissal.

While there were flickering signs of that, particularly at the start of both halves, they were all too fleeting and easily dealt with by a well-oiled French machine.

They displayed the kind of cohesion and composure that has put them on course for honours yet again – they let Wire punch themselves out, waited for them to open the door and when they did, they waltzed through it.

Warrington were better and in general at least, they could not be accused of a lack of effort but they still fell well short of the standard required to win matches like this.

Old habits die hard as they say and some classic traits of the Powell era were on display, namely being knocked off stride at the first sign of things going wrong.

There were too many key errors – the first two tries came from basic mistakes on their own line and Catalans are a good enough side without being given gifts – and with the ball, they overcomplicated things although that tends to come when the scoreboard is against you.

And so another opportunity for Wire to turn a corner passes – the wrong kind of history is edging ever closer and time is running out to salvage something from this season.