Dean Richards rued the lack of accuracy from his side as they slumped to a 15th league defeat following a 28-19 loss to Gloucester. Newcastle Falcons are relegated with one round to go.
Dean Richards rues lack of accuracy
Looking at the first half of the game at Kingsholm Richards said, “It’s the story of the season. The boys put their heart and soul into it and a lack of accuracy at times probably cost us two or three tries. They’re a good team and we knew we’d always be up against it coming down here.”
Richards added, “Today we did incredibly well. The first try was an outstanding try. Jamie Blamire coming off the bench for his first league game did well. There’s some good performances, I thought George McGuigan and Gary Graham were outstanding. So some good performances from some of the boys but the lack of accuracy cost us dear.”
Effort levels never questioned
Looking at Matt Banahan’s interception try that killed off the game Richards praised his sides efforts and explained they needed to go for it.
“You’re pushing the game aren’t you, knowing you need to score at that point. It’s one of those things.”
Positive future with youthful squad
Having sat at the foot of the table for quite some time Richards elected to play his youth in the past weeks and believes this has put them in good stead going forward saying, “We wouldn’t have played them if we didn’t think they weren’t capable of playing and they didn’t look out of place so I was really pleased with them.
“We’ve got an A League match on Monday night then Bristol next week and then everything’s focused on getting up next season.”
Premiership getting harder every year
Having been in the Gallagher Premiership since 2014 Newcastle have seen the league get progressively harder.
Richards explained, “I think it is [getting harder]. Johan [Ackermann] and I were talking earlier and you look at the recruitment going into next season and some of the teams that are around next year, they’re unbelievable. It’s getting harder and harder.”
When quizzed on just what it takes to stay competitive in the league now Richards pondered before answering, “A good academy, culture and a huge budget if you want to win it.”
Preparing for next season
Looking ahead to the off season the Falcons Director of Rugby said, “You have a natural changeover at the end of each year. For us it’s been around 12-14 players and I don’t envisage it being much different this year. The core majority of boys will be staying and it’ll give us a great opportunity to come back up first time round.
“In some respects having been bottom for a while you’ve always had one eye on what if as Director of Rugby and I think the coaches and players are allowed to prioritize this season. There’s always been that eye on what if and you adjust your plans accordingly and have contingencies in place.
Players left in sad mood
Following the defeat Newcastle players and staff were without words. The Newcastle boss explained that he didn’t say much after the game adding, “They had a small chat on the pitch and we just sat in the changing room. There wasn’t any need to say anything, everybody knew what was at stake and what happened. We had a quiet word and that was it.
He added, “We’ll give it our all to come back up, but the thing you can’t do with the Championship is take it as a given as like the Premiership is getting stronger, so is the Championship.
“It’ll be hard and we’ll not take any games for granted.”
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