South Africa’s Faf de Klerk has scored 27 points in seven appearances for Sale this season

Sale boss Steve Diamond says they must play good rugby in order to boost their fan base in a crowded sporting area.

The club, who share their AJ Bell Stadium home with rugby league side Salford Red Devils, face competition from local football and league teams.

“If you win 10-9, some teams operate like that and it’s important that they do,” Diamond told BBC Radio Manchester.

“But for us, where football and league are so crazy, we have to entertain to get people to come back.”

Sale signed Australia and South Africa internationals James O’Connor and Faf de Klerk in the summer and Diamond suggested this could contribute towards stoking up interest locally.

He continued: “With players like James O’Connor and Faf de Klerk who’ve come in and have a bit of gold dust around them, we’ve got the recruitment right.”

Sale are currently ninth in the Premiership after two wins in their opening six games, and drew 20-20 with Stade Toulousain in the European Challenge Cup on Saturday.

Second row Josh Beaumont and centre Johnny Leota are currently out of action because of injuries, but Diamond said the club would not rush to replace them.

“There’s irons in every fire in every hemisphere. The top and bottom of it is that we need a centre and we need a lock but we need top-draw players,” he added.

“I’m not going to go market and get an also-ran. We’ve done it too many times. We’ll keep looking, but it looks like we’ll have to loan at first.”

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