York City Knights captain Chris Clarkson has given a positive message ahead of the 2022 season with new faces entering the fray and pre-season well underway.
The Knights players have been in pre-season training for a few weeks and positivity is at a high in the training camp with two friendlies pencilled in the calendar at the start of 2022.
Midlands Hurricanes and Super League side Castleford Tigers will both visit the LNER Community Stadium in the new year before the 2022 Betfred Championship season gets underway.
Head Coach James Ford has added several key players to his squad for the upcoming season including experienced heads Jordan Thompson, Pauli Pauli and Jamie Ellis.
31 year-old Chris Clarkson, who is wearing the captain’s armband for a second season, has spoken highly of the new recruits and their impact in training so far.
“The new lads are great, they bring a lot of experience and a lot of Super League experience, something that will stand us in good stead for the season ahead,” said Clarkson.
“A lot of the lads can learn from those players and improve their game as well. Pre-season has been good so far. We have jumped straight into it like there has been no time off. There are some new lads in and pretty much a new squad. It’s great to see that everybody is doing really well.
“They bring that consistency that we lacked last year and they know how to win a game, how to play a game plan and how put that on teams. That’s something we lacked in 2021.
Discussing one of the new signings, Clarkson pointed to a new Knights half as someone who could have a great impact. “Jamie Ellis has a great kicking game that will get us on the front foot.”
The biggest off field news for the Knights has been James Ford signing a new three year deal that will see the 2019 Betfred Championship Coach Of The Year stay at the club till 2024.
Clarkson has highlighted the importance of having Ford at the club and what it means to the club.
“With Fordy running the show, the club is in great hands” added Clarkson.
“He’s a fantastic coach and you understand what he wants from you. He isn’t afraid to crack the whip with you, either”
2021 saw the Knights have a tough campaign as we finished ninth in the Betfred Championship, something that Clarkson wants to see himself and his teammates correct in the new season and believes that being able to build a solid defence and gelling as team will help them on the field.
“The Championship, it’s not an easy league, there are some fantastic teams in there and with the two Cumbrian clubs that have just come up it enhances that,” continued Clarkson.
“We need to get battled hardened for that. We want to be an attacking team with flair but also defend with some tenacity.
“We think defence wins games and we want to be a lot better with that, as well as getting to know each other as a team, building relationships as an attack and the foundations in defence.”
Last weekend saw the publication of the Knights’ 2022 Fixture List and there is no better time to get your Season Membership to take in all the action! With Season Tickets, Premier Club Season Tickets, Vice-President and Platinum packages available, there really is something for everyone with the Knights in 2022. Full information on each package is available at yorkcityknights.com/22Memberships.