Stevo, Brian Carney and Phil Clarke discuss who they think will be the winners and losers of Super League

Last Updated: 26/02/14 7:21pm

Lomax: a key player for St Helens in 2014

2014 is fraught with danger for the 14 Super League teams as the bottom two will be relegated as part of the new 2015 re-structure that the RFL hopes will transform the game in this country.

And while some things change and adapt there are some things that don't: Stevo, Brian Carney and Phil Clarke disagreeing on who will be crowned Grand Final champions.

"I've looked into my crystal ball and I can see red and white," said Stevo on Boots 'n' All.

"Not the cherry and white of Wigan but the red and white of St Helens. A fully fit James Roby, a fully fit Jonny Lomax and the introduction of Luke Walsh who I think is the final piece in the jigsaw.

"I know they have to get off to a winning start - they got hammered by Huddersfield in the first round last year - and it is so important to Nathan Brown to make sure that they beat Warrington on Thursday night."

That may seem like a big shout but Phil Clarke has an even bigger shout: "I've been to the doctor because everyone thinks I am suffering from Red Fever! It's contagious along the banks of the Manchester ship canal.

"I have bought into the Salford dream and I think they can go from the bottom to the top in just 12 months.

"Salford have got some great players - whether they can be a great team is the challenge for Brian Noble. He has some explosive materials to work with and if he uses them in the right way then they will be very destructive.

"I think they will break the losing DNA in the club that has existed for 20 years - they have players who have won things in the past and I genuinely think they can do this. They might not be at the top after 27 rounds, but with home advantage they just have to cross that bridge, walk to Old Trafford and pick up the trophy - it is easy for them!"

Brian Carney believes in all this 'red madness' he is the voice of reason and has backed the Huddersfield Giants to go all the way.

"I can see why Stevo makes a case for Saints - their fans should be really excited. I still have a question mark over their half backs - I don't think Jordan Turner is the answer. I think he is better in the centres. Nathan Brown at the moment disagrees but perhaps Gary Wheeler will be the man to partner Luke Walsh in the future but that will be sorted out later.

"I can see why Phil think there will be a progression at Salford - they have a fantastic team and will probably have their best year in Super League. But to finish first? No.

"I will now make the case for Huddersfield Giants. They went the length of last season and finished top. They have added Antonio Kaufusi, Chris Bailey and Jodie Broughton and they are a really settled side. They have a driven coach and I believe they have all the ingredients to go a step further in 2014."

Basement battle

It's not all arguments in the Boots 'n' All studio though - when it comes to who will be relegated, our esteemed panel are all on the same page.

"The teams that had the most difficult off seasons will be in trouble", explained Carney.

"Wakefield, Bradford and London will be battling it out. Wakefield boss Richard Agar is right, they have been written off in the past but I think this will be a very tough year for them.

Phil Clarke has put on his stats hat and come up with some figures to back up his choices: "I think you will need seven wins to avoid going down and I don't think London will get that.

"I think London will finish bottom which is sad because in Kieran Dixon they have one of the most exciting players in the competition, but someone has to finish at the bottom. I think Bradford will be the other team to go down."

Stevo agrees: "I think London are behind the eight ball and it has been difficult for them to get some quality players in with there being so much uncertainty.

"I do hope they unearth some more youngsters like Dixon because their coach Tony Rea will have no choice but to throw them into Super League. I hope they survive but I think they will be fighting it out with Bradford and Wakefield for survival."