HUDDERSFIELD coach Ian Watson has confirmed his club’s interest in signing Saints playmaker Theo Fages.

The 26-year-old French international is one of several Saints players out of contract at the end of the season.

Coach Kristian Woolf has admitted the club could lose at least some of them due to salary-cap pressure, although he is keen to retain the services of Fages.

Watson, who coached the scrum-half in his time at Salford, says the Giants have lodged an interest with the player’s agent but he expects stiff competition.

Watson said: “Theo has been a top player for a number of years – he was at Salford when I was there – so we’re definitely interested in top-quality players but nothing has been done or sorted out on the back of that.

“He’s 26 and look at what he’s done at Saints.

READ>Saints supporters advised to take Covid test ahead of Monday's game

"He controls and organises their team, so I think every team in the country, if not the NRL, will be interested in Theo.

“We definitely have an interest and have registered that interest with his agent but you can’t ever just go off that.”

Fages, who has been at St Helens for the last six seasons and played in their back-to-back Grand Final triumphs, was free to talk to other clubs after the transfer market opened on May 1.

St Helens Star: Theo Fages flies over for a try

Theo Fages is a fans' favourite at Saints and has been at the club for six seasons

Earlier in the week Saints coach Kristian Woolf said talks with the 26-year-old Frenchman, who has played a key role in their back-to-back Grand Final triumphs, are ongoing and his re-signing is a priority for the club.

“We’ve a couple of blokes in that boat,” Woolf said. “He’s someone that we’d really like to keep, he’s a priority for us.

“Theo has been at the club for six years and he’s been our half-back for the last two years. Obviously he’s extremely well respected and really well liked within the group.

“At the end of the day, sometimes there’s other things at play when it comes to contracts. We are in a salary-cap sport as well.

“The salary cap is designed to squeeze players out of strong teams, that’s essentially what it’s there to do, make them go to other teams.

“That’s not specifically related to Theo but what it does mean is that we are going to lose some players as a result of the salary cap.

“We do have some terrific young kids coming through.

“In reference to Theo, we’d certainly love to keep him and we’ve made that clear to him.”

Overseas players Lachlan Coote and Kevin Naiqama and highly rated second rower James Bentley, who is a recovering from injury, are also out of contract this year.