They had the measure of Wigan in the regular season last time and only lost out to their great rivals' superior know-how in the play-offs. They were oustandingly well coached and their players will have learnt a great deal from their near miss in 1998.
On top of a couple of key signings to strengthen their squad in Lee Jackson and Karl Pratt, Leeds have the best under-19s in the game. Throw in a bigger contribution from Barrie McDermott and the resources available to Graham Murray start to look formidable.
Against that, Wigan, still Leeds' logical stumbling block, look a little thin in some positions. Considering how little there was between the two sides last season, the balance could tilt sufficiently this time.
So there you have it: Leeds to win Super League, pursued by Wigan, St Helens and Bradford. Gateshead to be respectable, but Wakefield to flounder; and do not expect Sheffield Eagles to give up the Challenge Cup without an almighty fight.Reuse content