Head coach hopeful of competitive showing at Allianz Park
Newcastle Falcons head coach John Wells is backing his side to cause Saracens problems in this afternoon’s Aviva Premiership match at Allianz Park, providing they can cut out “little errors” he says are responsible for undoing some of the excellent play displayed this season.
The Falcons take on Saracens after a 23 all draw last week against Wasps, in a match that they could feel frustrated in not closing out and Wells is looking for his charges to keep sharp throughout.
“The season has been littered with the odd individual error here or there and we‘ve got to be making sure we don’t make the same mistakes.”
“There have been times this season where we have played some outstanding rugby, whether that is attack or defence and then we make one mistake and bang, you’re underneath your posts. If you get a couple of little things wrong, then those little things will be exposed by good players.”
“There is always going to be moments of individual brilliance that see good players outdone, we have guys who can do that in our squad so what we have to do is make sure we are sharp and make the most of our opportunities with front-foot ball and be ruthless in defence.”
Taking on a side that currently sits third in the table gives the Falcons players an opportunity to demonstrate that sharpness has been honed and the former England forwards coach says that the mindset heading into the game is positive.
“The lads are looking forward to it and if we can get on top, get that front foot ball and play well in attack, where some of our play has been outstanding this year, then we have a chance to impose our style of play on the match. If we can do that, then I think we can look to cause Saracens some problems.”
Saracens themselves will be looking to do the same to the Falcons and for Wells, his side has prepared based on the known quantities that Saracens are likely to bring to Saturday’s fixture, hopefully preparing them to react to the unknown.
“Saracens are the epitome of a professional side, they have grown their side, slowly in the early years and have then went on to build their team around a game plan that, probably hasn’t really changed much since Brendan [Ventner] was there and in charge.”
"That is a strength though and as a result of that and of the consistency of players who have been there on a regular basis, they know what they are doing through thick and thin and I think that irrespective of what team Saracens put out week to week, you kind of know what’s coming because of that.”
“It then becomes a matter of how you prepare to deal with that, as well as trying to be aware of some of the chaos that can come in rugby.”
This afternoon’s match kicks off at 3pm with live text commentary via the club’s official twitter feed @FalconsRugby and the official Falcons app.
BBC Radio Newcastle will be providing full match commentary online at the BBC Rugby website and highlights will be screened on Sunday evening at 8pm on ITV4