Castleford Tigers Head Coach on 2025 Signings Amid Over-Inflated Market

Castleford Tigers Boss Cites ‘Over-Inflated’ Market for Lack of Signings

Castleford Tigers head coach Craig Lingard has attributed the club’s lack of signings for the 2025 season to an “over-inflated” player market, which he believes is a result of a shortage of quality Super League players becoming available.

While not all Super League teams have confirmed their rosters for next year, several have made notable acquisitions. Leeds Rhinos secured the services of club legend Ryan Hall from Hull KR, while the latter recruited NRL star Jared Waerea-Hargreaves. Additionally, Hull FC made a splash with the signing of John Asiata, and there are ongoing reports of moves such as Tommy Makinson’s potential transfer to Catalans.

Amidst this flurry of activity, Castleford Tigers have remained relatively quiet on the recruitment front, with few names linked to the club for the 2025 season. Instead, the Tigers have focused on retaining their existing talent, securing contract extensions for young prospects like Jason Qareqare, Cain Robb, Sam Hall, and George Hill.

The most significant business for Castleford has been the contract extensions for Innes and Louis Senior, though Lingard acknowledged that these deals merely formalize existing loan arrangements rather than bringing in new recruits.

“The UK market has very slim pickings and that’s why you’re finding that anybody available has a lot of teams are going out all for them, and it’s maybe over-inflating the market a little bit,” Lingard said.

Lingard explained that the club has now shifted its focus to external recruitment, as the majority of internal retainment has been completed. However, he admitted that the “slim pickings” in the UK player market have driven up the prices, leading to an “over-inflated” situation.

As a result, the effective utilization of the club’s quota spots has become increasingly crucial for Castleford Tigers. The recent extension of Liam Horne’s contract, which secures a quota spot until the end of the 2026 season, underscores the importance of this strategic approach.

With two open quota spots available for 2025, the club will need to carefully consider their options, as Lingard emphasized the need to ensure that these spots “are providing you value and bringing that value for money.

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