Leeds Rhinos vs London Broncos Predictions: Croft due for more post-Smith success?

 | Friday 5th July 2024, 9:44am

Friday 5th July 2024, 9:44am

George Riley Rugby League

Leeds Rhinos produced their best performance of the season last time out to beat Leigh Leopards in Rob Burrow’s emotional tribute game and will be confident of making it back-to-back wins since coach Rohan Smith’s departure when rock-bottom London Broncos come to town on Saturday (kick-off 15:00 BST, live on Sky Sports Arena).

Leeds had lost three of their last four games prior to Smith’s departure and the win over the Leopards, and interim boss Chev Walker will expect to oversee a victory against a Broncos side who have won just once all season. My Leeds Rhinos vs Leigh Leopards predictions hold no great shocks.

Leeds Rhinos vs Leigh Leopards Tips

  • Handicap 3-way Alternative 3: London Broncos +24 @ 11/5
  • Brodie Croft anytime tryscorer @ TBC

Leeds Rhinos vs London Broncos Odds

Unsurprisingly, Leeds are massive favourites at 1/80, with London priced at 14/1 and a draw in 80 minutes available at 28/1. In the main 2-way handicap market, Leeds are giving up a 32.5-point start at 10/11, with London 5/6.

Team News

Leeds welcome back some big names who have all been sidelined by concussion protocols in recent weeks. England centre Harry Newman and winger Ash Handley both played for their country in last week’s win in France, with Handley helping himself to two tries. They had been missing for Leeds after head knocks in last month’s defeat at Hull FC which cost Smith his job, but both return to the squad this week.

Two other players – hooker Andy Ackers and prop Sam Lisone – are also back from concussion, Ackers having missed the last three Rhinos games.

Rugby League Odds

Ben Littlewood retains his place in the squad but Corey Johnson drops out having been a sub in the win over the Leopards.

London also make several changes for the trip to West Yorkshire. Head coach Mike Eccles has key pair Ethan Natoli and Rhys Kennedy back available after suspension and both will come straight back in. Also back in the squad are Sam Davis and Rob Butler who missed the defeat at Wigan through injury.

Handicap 3-way Alternative 3: London Broncos +24 @ 11/5

There have been some big scorelines between these two sides over the years and London will head up the M1 knowing that Leeds have a defence they can exploit. The Rhinos remain without a head coach as discussions with potential suitors continue, and we will find out whether they have turned much of a corner or not in this fixture.

The shackles came off for Leeds in a vastly improved performance in the win over Leigh, but much of that appeared to be down to the emotion of a week which saw coach Smith depart and Headingley pay tribute to Rob Burrow. The energy inside the stadium that night just made you feel that Leeds were going to win no matter what. This one is much more like a ‘normal’ fixture.

So will Leeds keep improving? Brodie Croft was a man possessed in that game a couple of weeks ago and if he can produce anything like that level of performance then Leeds will win easily. But the Broncos always have a go for 80 minutes, no matter what the scoreboard might tell you after the game, so this might not be the easiest of nights for the Rhinos.

I would be staggered if Leeds don’t win with a bit to spare, but looking at the handicap I am liking London again a little and am going for the Broncos with a 24-point start at 11/5, a price which implies a 31.3% chance.

London +24 @ 11/5

Brodie Croft anytime tryscorer @  11/10

The Brodie Croft we saw in a Leeds shirt against Leigh a couple of weeks ago was the Brodie Croft we saw winning the Steve Prescott Man of Steel award for Salford Red Devils. Unleashed and unplayable.

Whether that was by design in a shift in emphasis since the departure of the head coach that we could now see more of, or if Brodie was just running on pure emotion that night, I am looking forward to finding out.

Brodie Croft anytime tryscorer @ 11/10

You can read all our latest Rugby League Betting Tips at our dedicated Betfred Insights Rugby League content hub.

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