Calum Green believes Newcastle Falcons’ team spirit is giving them an extra edge this season as they prepare for Friday night’s Aviva Premiership visit of Bath.
The Falcons took a pair of bonus points from last week’s clash with league leaders Wasps, Green crediting their collective ethos for an improved Premiership performance.
The second-row said: “I think we’re a happy camp, but we want to be better. Going into the Saracens game on Christmas Eve we put across a good account of ourselves, I thought we played well for most of last Friday night against Wasps and everyone is talking about how we are improving. That’s all well and good, but we want to be winning games and pushing up the table.
“This year more than anything I think we have gelled together as a group. There has been a core of players who have been here for a number of years now, and we all get on. There are no egos, nobody thinking they are bigger than the club or any other players, and everyone is on an even keel. We all respect each other and it’s a good place to turn up every day for training. I look forward to coming in every day, working hard and talking to the lads. I think that is starting to show on the pitch.”
A specialist in the basics of the tight-five, the former Leicester and Leeds man said ahead of the 7.45pm kick-off: “We’ve got to put together an 80-minute performance rather than dropping of for five or six minutes and conceding soft points. We have to be confident that we can prevent them coming back into the game, and really have that as our mind-set.
“As a forward pack we have to be on our money all the time. Scrums, line-outs and mauls might not be the most exciting facets of the game for some of the people watching, but against Bath they are really important. If we can be better than them in those aspects we will give our backs the chance to score points, and win the game on that platform.
“The attacking stuff probably isn’t my forte. I just stick to what I know in the scrum, maul and line-out, and certainly in the Aviva Premiership you need to have that. You can’t go away from those basics or you’ll get ripped to bits, and you have to be good at those aspects and build from there.
“Maybe Bath have not been playing as well recently as they did earlier in the season, but they are still a top side with loads of exciting backs and a forward unit who are good at the nuts and bolts. We know we have to be at the top of our game to get the win, which is what we are aiming to do.”
Having last week welcomed a season-high home crowd of 8,730, Green is thankful to the region’s rugby supporters and the boost they give to the players.
He said: “It was brilliant to see the place so full against Wasps, although in fairness I think over the whole of this season it has been pretty good.
“Our fans have turned up, they make loads of noise and are really supportive of the team for the whole game. When you come out and you see the place pretty much full, it’s great to see that. Hopefully those guys will come out again for the Bath game.
“I’m confident going into it. Why not? There’s no reason not to be. If we turn up mentally as well as we can do, there’s no reason why we can’t do it.”
Tickets for Friday’s 7.45pm kick-off against Bath are available by calling 0871 226 6060, clicking here or from the stadium in person.