Last weekend saw the return of fans to Bower Fold after an absence of 14 months, but we were unable to give them the return we desperately wanted to and slipped to defeat against Widnes Vikings.

We know from previous experience that one of the difficulties in the Championship is that it is such a big step up from League One and being able to compete week in, week out – often against teams with far greater resources – is not easy.

We are finding that at the moment and once you throw in all the other things like injuries there is no doubt we are going through a tough spell.

Of course, we have to keep things in perspective and I genuinely hope that, after playing at this level before, the fans understand that it is never going to be a straightforward ride.

Despite that, it goes without saying that everybody at the club shares the disappointment of defeat and even though there is no game this week there has been a full week of training and all that is geared up to trying to ensure a win next time out.

There is no match due to the Challenge Cup and 1895 Cup semi-finals being played this weekend and it almost seems like a lifetime since we were about to set off on our own cup adventure.

This week has seen Tom Nisbet return to St Helens after his dramatic debut for the club at York saw him sent off in the first half.

Whilst it was unfortunate that he then ended up with a two-match ban as a result of the challenge, we have seen enough in training and that first half to hope that he may return to be with us sooner rather than later.

We have spoken to both Tom and Saints about that, and the player is keen for that to happen if possible so let’s wait and see what can be done.

It was also unfortunate timing in respect of Louis Senior’s debut.

Whilst he went one better than Tom and managed to finish the match, the second week of his initial loan from Huddersfield Giants is this week when we have a blank weekend!

We are always on the lookout for players who we feel can improve the squad and this season is no different and the players already at the club understand and know that.

If we can bring in additional quality to the side, then everybody benefits.

Last week also saw us use our new online ticketing system for the first time.

In the main, whilst it didn’t go live until a bit later than we had hoped, things went fairly smoothly and the teething problems we had as a club will get ironed out over the next few games as we get used to the system.

Hopefully people will understand the need for us to use a system for online tickets, particularly when at present, we have to record details for track and trace purposes.

We had a small number of people asking why they couldn’t pay at the gate, but this is not allowed under the present protocols, however if anybody in that position rings the club office, we can make alternative arrangements with them.

Anyway, make the most of this free weekend as we then need you back cheering on the lads the following week against Sheffield Eagles.